No Border Surge, Good Youth Poll for Biden, What is Twitter doing in Turkey?
My Next Live Political Briefing is Tuesday at 1pm EST/Welcome New Subscribers!
From NPR this morning:
After days of anticipation, there was a relative sense of calm, if also uncertainty, in the minutes and hours that followed the expiration of Title 42.
The pandemic-era policy severely limited immigration to the U.S., nearly halting the processing of asylum applications for over three years.
As the policy was formally lifted on Thursday at 11:59 p.m. ET, security officials were bracing for an unprecedented influx of migrants along the southern U.S. border — some estimates suggested as many as 150,000 migrants might arrive in the hopes of crossing over.
Instead, the number of border crossings remained steady, according to Department of Homeland Security Assistant Secretary Blas Nuñez-Neto.
"Overnight, we saw similar patterns to what we've seen over the past several days," he told reporters during a midday briefing call on Friday. "We continue to encounter high levels of non-citizens at the border but we did not see a substantial increase overnight or an influx at midnight."
As someone who has worked on the immigration issue for two decades, I think the Administration’s new approach is smart, creative, and pragmatic. Expanding legal pathways while limiting opportunities to request asylum on the border will save lives and deny traffickers income as people will now have far better and safer ways to seek an asylum claim.
The Administration has provided a temporary solution, but the ball is now in Congress’s court to update a border and immigration system in need of modernization and improvement. The House Republican bill passed on Thursday was highly partisan, performative, and deeply un-serious (like most of their legislation) and should be ignored. We can and must do far better in the months ahead. But so far, the new post-Title 42 era is off to a good start, and the Administration deserves credit for doing the hard work of governing here.
New Good Youth Poll For Biden - Voters for Tomorrow has released a new large sample poll of 18-29-year-olds showing:
Biden 52 - Trump 24 (+28)
Biden 49 - DeSantis 15 (+34)
These are very good numbers. The findings reinforce our belief that Dems have a historic opportunity with young voters this cycle, and that we should be launching a national youth voter registration drive this summer.
This data also confirms that the WaPo/ABC News poll showing Trump with a large lead among all voters had serious problems, and needs to be dismissed (see my memo on the problems with that poll).
Twitter Intervenes In the Turkish Election - Early this morning Twitter announced it was shutting down or throttling accounts in Turkey the day before a critical, close election in this NATO country. This comes a few days after the pro-democracy opposition party, currently leading in the polls, loudly complained about Russian electoral/information interference on behalf of the Erdogan government in these closing days.
Simply, NATO and Western governments must demand that Twitter explain in great detail what actions it has taken. We need to know is happening, and whether Musk has intervened on behalf of the Putin-friendly Erdogan government.
The stakes here are immense. We are now in a place where Musk can turn off accounts in any country at any time whenever he feels like it without being required to explain what he is doing. He has already throttled access to Substack on Twitter. He could turn off all Biden/Dem/US Govt accounts in the final weeks before our election next year, for example. It’s why these issues around information integrity, hybrid war, election/information interference, and now the dangers of AI need to move to the very top of the agenda of NATO and the G7, and why we need a big and robust public conversation about it all here in the US too.
Political Briefing Next Tuesday - My next monthly political briefing and discussion is next Tuesday at 1pm EST. RSVP for Zoom links here. For those who can’t make it live, it will be recorded and posted here at Hopium on Tuesday afternoon. Sure is a lot to talk about!
With Democrats Things Get Better - a new and updated version of our core Hopium presentation dropped on Tuesday, and hope everyone will take the time to watch it this month. Much of what we do here flows from the understandings in this presentation so try find 30 minutes in the coming weeks to check it out. Consider it a Hopium Chronicles orientation session!
And we close out this Saturday with the great Biden “freedom” launch video:
Keep working hard all - Simon