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Data: TRAC; Chart: Axios Visuals

The Biden administration now has nearly 17,000 migrants assigned to special courts dedicated to processing families seeking asylum quicker.

Why it matters: New data from Syracuse University's Transactional Records Access Clearinghouse (TRAC) gives another sign of just how many migrants — including families — have been crossing the U.S.-Mexico border to claim political asylum.

  • Nearly 12,000 migrants were added to the docket in August, according to TRAC.
  • Two-thirds of the more than 16,700 cases have been assigned to just six judges, portending new backlogs in a process designed to circumvent them.
  • One Boston immigration judge was assigned 129 cases in one day.

What they're saying: Multiple advocacy groups have condemned the administration's return to so-called "rocket dockets" for migrant families. There's concern the cases are decided too quickly — not giving migrants a fair shot.

  • Such a fast-track court process is just another way the administration is scrambling to more quickly move migrants through the immigration process.
  • "Although the Biden administration is understandably trying to find creative ways to address asylum-seeking families, the new 'Dedicated Docket' may do more to simply shuffle cases around and disrupt immigration judge’s schedules rather than allowing the court to process asylum cases in a fair and efficient manner,” Austin Kocher, a TRAC assistant research professor, told Axios.

Go deeper

DOJ ends settlement talks with migrant families separated under Trump

People demonstrate in Washington, DC, on June 28, 2018 against then-President Trump's immigration policies. Photo: Nicholas Kamm/AFP via Getty Images

The Department of Justice confirmed Thursday that it has ended negotiations for compensation for migrant families separated at the U.S.-Mexico border under the Trump administration's "zero-tolerance" policy.

The big picture: The news comes after the Biden administration faced criticism from Republicans following reports that the DOJ was in talks to pay up to $450,000 per person to settle lawsuits filed on behalf of the families affected.

Airlines call for Biden admin's "immediate intervention" in 5G deployment

Photo: Tayfun Coskun/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The CEOs of leading U.S. air cargo and passenger carriers on Monday warned the Biden administration there could be "catastrophic disruption" after AT&T and Verizon deploy a new 5G service this week.

Driving the news: They said in a letter to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg and other top federal officials ahead of the C-Band 5G service's deployment Wednesday that "the nation's commerce will grind to a halt" and "could potentially strand tens of thousands of Americans overseas."

Updated 3 hours ago - Energy & Environment

Thousands without power as "hazardous" winter storm lashes East Coast

Satellite imagery of the Northeastern U.S. taken by NOAA on Jan. 17. Photo: NOAA

A major winter storm lashed much of the East Coast Sunday and Monday, causing widespread power outages and disrupting travel over the holiday weekend.

The latest: Authorities in North Carolina confirmed that two people died in a car crash and that they responded 600 vehicle accidents during the storm on Sunday, per the Washington Post.