In a move that smacks of deep state Obama-era holdovers brazenly defying the Trump administrationâ€™s agenda, the State Department plans to up the rate of refugees entering the United States from 830 per week to 1,500 per week, the New York Times reported.
The change in policy could come into effect as early as next month as the State Department works its way through a backlog of refugee applications that numbers in the tens of thousands. The State Department reportedly announced the shift in an email to private refugee aid organizations around the world, with department official Jennifer L. Smith noting that the admittance process will now be â€śunconstrained by the weekly quotas that were in place.â€ť
While there is no indication that President Donald Trump or his senior Cabinet members were informed of the abrupt change, the Department of Justice was allegedly consulted, according to â€“ you guessed it â€“ a source speaking under the condition of anonymity.
Under the previous admittance rate, the number of refugees would have risen from 45,533 in the middle of last week to roughly 61,000 by September 30, the end of fiscal year 2017. Subject to the possible new rate, that number would balloon to just under 73,000. In the last fiscal year of the Obama administration, 84,995 refugees were accepted into the United States.
Opponents of the new regulation have blasted State Department employees for going rogue, noting the bizarrely circuitous way that the American people were notified of the hike in refugee admittance.
Meanwhile, the Times offered multiple quotes from refugee advocates who were â€śdelightedâ€ť by the change, although one advocate lamented the impact that Trumpâ€™s anti-mass migration executive orders would have on the refugee resettlement program going forward. Some projections indicate that the Trump budget for FY 2018 would only allow 50,000 refugees to enter the country per year.