Though Trump was continually attacked for his border policies by the media, it appears that Biden has been victim to much less scrutiny. Liberals and the media often attacked Trump’s border policies as “racist” or a “human rights violation”. Biden, on the other hand, has had such terrible immigration policies that he is considering returning to Trump’s wall idea. The media has been much less critical of Biden, declining to criticize him as much as Trump. Biden has even had Democrats praise his immigration policies and claim that they were much more humane than Trump’s. 

Media Bias

Many Americans believe that the US media is too liberal. Even some self-identified liberals believe it is. According to Business Insider, it is indeed true that liberals dominate our media. In a study, it was shown that both donors and people who work for newspapers and other print media skew extremely liberal. found that 92% of press coverage for Trump was negative, with just 8% positive. Biden has much less negative press coverage than Trump did, in an analysis conducted by Aylien. More liberals than conservatives support the media and work for it.

Trump Border Criticism

The negative press for Trump was definitely there in his immigration policies. Liberals and the media ruthlessly criticized Trump during his time in office over the border wall. One editor of the Washington Post called the border wall a “complete waste of time and money”. The same editor criticized its environmental destruction. Many Democrats and media news outlets criticized Trump for being racist and xenophobic. Ilhan Omar (Dem. Rep. MN) considered the wall itself racist and xenophobic. She claimed that the Trump administration believed “you had to create maximum pain in order for immigrants to not come to our border”. She that the Biden administration is transitioning to a strategy of “maximum humanity and dignity”.

Human Rights at the Border

Unprecedented numbers of migrants have come to the US-Mexico border.  According to Vox, more than 5,100 such children, a record number, were in US Customs and Border Protection custody, staying in unsuitable, jail-like facilities, often for longer than the 72-hour legal limit. Another 11,900 children were in custody of the Department of Health and Human Services. Those children are staying either in permanent shelters — state-licensed facilities that are better equipped to administer care but have had to slash capacity amid the pandemic — or in temporary influx facilities that have comparatively little oversight. So far, the Biden administration has opened or is in the processing of opening six of these temporary facilities in Texas and California and is trying to expand space in others. Rather than single men, there have been more and more families and children. 

Abuse and understaffing have gone on in a San Antonio border facility. Texas Governor Greg Abbott considered the facility to be “a health and safety nightmare.” COVID positive children have allegedly not been isolated from other children. 

Biden Border Criticism

Though media outlets have turned against Biden over this border crisis, criticism of Biden has been far less considering how the media would have reacted if Trump had done such a bad job.  Many independent outlets have been covering the crisis. Even Vox, which is very liberal, has criticized Biden over the border crisis, though the news outlet attempted to downplay it at every turn. An opinion piece from The New York Times claimed that Biden should finish the wall, though the piece was written after Biden claimed that he was considering the continuation of the wall. Biden still has not been labeled as a racist and is seen from many angles as eliminating racism. Also, Biden’s 180-degree turn to considering continuing the wall was downplayed. If Trump came up with such a contradictory remark, he would have been destroyed by the media. Biden even gets away with declining to call the border problem a crisis. 

Biden has inspired immigrants to come here, as previously covered. His ideas about meaning well and compassion are vague ways to try to justify his actions without putting talking about specific, articulate policies. Media outlets have not pinned him down and asked what these policies actually are. Bret Stephens of the New York Times considered that the Biden administration’s concept of compassion was an “inducement to recklessness” when he talked about wanting the border wall to be completed. 

Biden Wall

Though Biden made it very clear that he wanted the construction of the border wall halted, it appears that agencies are pressuring his administration. The DHS in particular is having difficulty controlling immigration. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said that limited construction has already been funded. So far, the administration has considered adding technology to parts of the wall that have been completed. Coverage over whether or not he is going to go through with adding construction to the wall is spotty.

Written by: Miranda Smith

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