Encounters at the U.S. border have soared amid increased migration from Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba

Migrant encounters at the US southern border rose to 203,598 in August, the data showed. 22% of them were people who crossed more than once.

The Biden administration continues to enforce the pandemic emergency restriction, known as Title 42, which allows border authorities to turn migrants away at the border, but there are limits based on nationality. Frosty relations with countries like Cuba and Venezuela also prevent the US from removing people.

Last month, 55,333 migrants encountered at the border were from Venezuela, Cuba or Nicaragua, 175% more than last August.

“The failing communist regimes of Venezuela, Nicaragua, and Cuba are fueling a new wave of migration across the Western Hemisphere, including increased encounters along the U.S. southwest border,” CBP Commissioner Chris Magnus said in a statement.

Republican governors have criticized the Biden administration over the influx of migrants, focusing on managing the US-Mexico border and moving migrants out of the state in what Democrats have described as a political situation.

Administration officials acknowledged on a call with reporters Monday that the increase in migration is a challenge. Asked if the administration is considering moving migrants inland, one official cited an ongoing debate about improving processing at the border.

“One solution that we know is not a good solution is for enemy governors to travel by bus or plane — often by deception — to places they had no intention of going without any coordination,” the official said.

The Biden administration, officials have argued, is focused on increasing aid to countries in the Western Hemisphere that host Venezuelan migrants — including Colombia, Ecuador and Costa Rica — and expanding refugee resettlement to those displaced in the region.

In addition to these efforts, the administration says it is reducing asylum processing so that cases can be heard more quickly.

The administration has also redoubled efforts to dismantle human smuggling networks, adding more than 1,300 personnel in Latin America and around the US border and committing $50 million to the effort. The administration has reported that nearly 5,000 arrests have been made in the US and across the region as part of the effort.