Politics

Immigration Court Backlog Under Obama Reaches Record-Breaking High

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U.S. immigration courts reached a record backlog of 533,909 cases at the end of 2016, flooding America with illegal aliens and overrunning the court system.

That “crushing workload,” up 4.2 percent in the last four months of 2016 alone, has more than doubled since Obama took office in 2009 when the backlog was 223,809 pending cases, according to Syracuse University’s Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC).

The backlog of pending priority cases for families alone reached 102,342 in December, surpassing 100,000 such cases for the first time in history. Cases involving unaccompanied minors have also soared, reaching 75,582 cases in December, up from 73,649 in August, according to TRAC. (RELATED: Judges Let Criminal Aliens Stay)

The total number of backlogged cases, which previously hovered somewhere around 130,000 and 186,000 from 1998 to 2008, increased each year under Obama, according to TRAC’s data. 

The average time current cases have been pending in immigration court is increasing, too. Pending cases at the end of 2016 had been underway for an average of 678 days, up from 430 days in 2009, according to TRAC.

TRAC says the number of immigration court judges is “insufficient to handle the growing backlog.” The country’s approximately 250 attorney general-appointed immigration court judges, spread throughout 58 courts across the country, fall under the Department of Justice’s Executive Office for Immigration Review.

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