A year after a surge in illegal immigrant children and their families trying to cross the U.S. border, illegal immigration is on pace to be the lowest this year than any year since 1972, Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson said Monday, the Washington Times reports.
Johnson stopped short of saying whether the trend would continue but said he was encouraged.
“The bottom line of all this is, in recent years the total number of those who attempt to illegally cross our southwest border has declined dramatically, while the percentage of those who are apprehended has gone up,” the secretary said at the Baker Institute for Public Policy at Rice University. “Put simply, it’s now much harder to cross our border illegally and evade capture than it used to be — and people know that.”
During the first eight months of the fiscal year, Border Patrol captured 213,145 immigrants at the border, a decline of 34% from the same point in 2014.