Apprehensions at the southern border spiked in March as a record number of families were intercepted crossing into the country, according to data released by U.S. Customs and Border Protection Tuesday.
The number of individuals apprehended who crossed the border between ports of entry was 92,607 last month compared to 66,884 in February. The total number of migrants apprehended or deemed inadmissible at a port of entry in March was 103,492.
8,975 unaccompanied children and a record 53,077 family units crossed the border without authorization in March. Border authorities also arrested 30,555 single adults.
The number of those attempting to cross the border, either legally or illegally, dipped slightly at the end of last year, but has spiked since January. President Trump has floated the idea of closing the southern border if Congress and the Mexican government cannot come up with a solution to address the increasing numbers of asylum seekers and other immigrants arriving at the border.
“Border Patrol has done an incredible job, but the system is absolutely maxed out, and it’s a very unfair thing,” he said last week.
White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders added that “we’re at a breaking point,” and Democrats have “left the president absolutely no choice.”
Democrats have long opposed and refused to approve funding in the budget for Trump’s proposed concrete border wall. The president’s frustration with the mounting border crisis has reportedly contributed to the exodus of top Department of Homeland Security officials this week.