After quickly reversing a number of Trump-era policies related to immigration, the Biden administration has struggled to deal with large numbers of migrants arriving at the border and has faced legal challenges and setbacks. The administration’s continued use of a public health law to expel migrants prompted particular outcry when used to return thousands of migrants to Haiti, which is struggling with political instability and natural disasters. The administration also lost and has appealed cases related to the establishment of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and to its termination of the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP). Nonetheless, the administration has succeeded in making some changes, including doubling the 2022 refugee cap, expanding a program to allow certain children from Northern Triangle countries to apply for refugee status, and reopening U.S. borders to most vaccinated travelers. Biden’s more fundamental proposal for overhauling the U.S. immigration system remains stalled in Congress.

Kristen Eichensehr, Biden Administration Continues Efforts to Change Immigration Policy Amidst Surges of Migrants and Court Losses, 116 American Journal of International Law, 197–205 (2022).
UVA Law Faculty Affiliations