Bites Media

2020 Presidential Election

2020 Immigration: Migration


  • There are several ways to legally enter the United States.  Learn about the ways here.
  • Some migrants enter illegally for various reasons. 
  • Currently, there are criminal penalties for entering the U.S. illegally. [The New York Times]
  • Learn about the history of border-crossing here.



  • The Trump administration has used these criminal codes as justification to separate children and parents crossing illegally at the border. 
  • The United Nations has declared the practice "illegal." [The United Nations]
  • The Human Rights Watch said this separation policy causes "severe and lasting harm." [Human Rights Watch]

President Trump


supports criminal penalties for illegal entry

Under the Trump administration, there have been no changes to the long-standing U.S. law. 



supported family separations

Apr 2018: The Trump administration implemented a "zero-tolerance policy" in family separation cases. [Congressional Research Service]


June 2018: President Trump signed an executive order ending the policy. [NPR]



supports detention centers 

President Trump also supports private detention centers and has increased use of for-profit detention centers.


More than 75% of ICE detainees are housed in detention centers. [USA Today]


Former Vice President Biden


supports criminal penalties for illegal entry

Biden has supported keeping the criminal penalties for illegal migration. [Politico]



is against family separations

In 2018, Biden said "A policy that traumatizes children isn’t a bargaining chip. It’s abhorrent." [Vox]



wants to reform detention centers

Biden wants to end private, for-profit detention centers [Joe Biden Campaign]

Key Vocabulary