Colorado Republican Representative Lauren Boebert has once again found herself at the center of a debate, this time concerning a tweet she wrote that betrayed her understanding of mathematics and data analytics.
The tweet in question focused on Title 42, a pandemic-related public health measure implemented during the Trump era to restrict the entry of migrants at the Mexican border. As the measure expired on May 11, concerns arose regarding a potential surge in attempted border crossings into the United States.
Boebert has been vocal about this issue for months, warning that the end of Title 42 would lead to an unprecedented influx of undocumented immigrants. However, following the expiration of Title 42, CNN reported a surprising finding. Contrary to expectations, there was a significant drop in the number of migrant encounters at the border.
American authorities reported a 50 percent decrease in encounters compared to the previous days, prior to the policy's termination. CNN even provided a graphic to illustrate these numbers, albeit in reverse chronological order.
This report seemed to perplex Boebert, who took to Twitter to share her confusion. She posted an image of CNN's graphic, accompanied by the following comment:
‘Still no surge’ says CNN as they show a surge on their graphic. How stupid do they think the American people are?”
You can see Boebert's tweet below.
Boebert's tweet was met with a mixture of bewilderment and exasperation from many observers.
Some wondered whether she had misunderstood the data or simply failed to explain her point clearly.
Despite the backlash, Boebert chose not to delete the tweet and instead decided to double down on her stance, claiming:
"The graphic shows 40,000+ people invading our country in a matter of days. If that's not a surge to you, then what is?"
You can see Boebert's response below.
It is important to acknowledge that the factors influencing fluctuations in migrant numbers are multifaceted.
The previous implementation of Title 42, which expelled border crossers to Mexico without allowing them to seek asylum, often resulted in repeated attempts. The end of this policy now means harsher consequences for those crossing illegally, including potential deportation and a five-year ban from entering the United States for individuals who do not qualify for asylum.
These complex circumstances might explain the slight increase in numbers leading up to May 11. However, Boebert's tweets failed to provide clear context or a coherent argument, leaving room for speculation about her intentions and understanding of the situation.