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U.S. immigration courts’ backlog exceeds one million cases

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THE WALL STREET JOURNAL:

The backlogged deportation docket pending in U.S. immigration courts surpassed one million cases in August, despite the Trump administration’s varied attempts to cut back on asylum claims.

The backlog this year has grown at a record pace, according to the Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse at Syracuse University, which tracks immigration court data. The figure has nearly doubled since President Trump took office in January 2017, when about 542,000 cases were pending.

The growing backlog is due in part to the surge of Central American families crossing the U.S.-Mexico border this year, with more people crossing illegally in May than during any other month in a decade. The Trump administration’s crackdown on illegal immigration has also contributed, experts say.

A Justice Department spokesman said that, while the department doesn’t certify data from third parties, the report and the department’s own data offer further confirmation of the crisis at the border. The spokesman added that the administration is taking steps to address the backlog and called on Congress to act to address the issue.

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