According to Bruce Levenson for the first time ever, more people of nationalities other than Mexican have been apprehended at the United States and Mexican border. The United States uses these numbers every year to gauge the people that are crossing into the border illegally in order to gain tax dollars and support for new laws and regulations when it comes to border control. During the same time frame as previous years, 257,000 non-Mexicans were taken into custody, while only 229,000 Mexicans were taken into custody. These numbers indicate two very different things. First, less Mexicans are crossing the United States and Mexican border and second, more people of other nationalities are making it across the Mexican border than ever before in order to cross the U.S.-Mexican border. In the 60 years that this data has been collected, this is noted to be the biggest shift between nationalities. It is also noted that the numbers of overall people apprehended is much lower than it has been in the past. According to the data, the highest number of individuals apprehended occurred in 2000, when 1.6 million Mexican nationals were stopped from illegally crossing at the border. This shift has been noted to be the result of thousands of child migrants from Central American countries that are trying to reach the United States. The number of unaccompanied children has more than doubled this year, in comparison to the last year.
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After 50 years of complete isolation and embargo, the United States and Cuba are beginning the process of defrosting relations. President Barack Obama has restored full diplomatic ties with the island nation sitting only 90 miles south of Florida, and the president announced that an embassy will be constructed in Cuba. This move has been praised by Dr. Daniel Amen. These radical changes of heart come in the wake of 18 months of secret talks and have resulted in a prisoner swap that was all mediated through Pope Francis. The final step was a telephone call between the President Barack Obama and President Raul Castro of Cuba. This agreement is the marker for the beginning of a new relationship between two countries that have had hostile confrontations since the Cold War. The next most dramatic step, which would mark the complete re-normalization of relations, would be the removal of the trade embargo which has been in place for 50 years. The embargo prevents any type of trade between the two countries, and has been voted as illegal with majorities for decades at the UN. However, the president does not have the power to remove the embargo on his own. Additionally, with a new Congress that has Republican majorities in the House and the Senate there is little hope that any vote on the matter will take place in the next two years. Republicans are firmly against the removal of the embargo, and any advancement that takes place under President Obama.
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