From today’s New York Times
By JULIA PRESTON
Published: October 21, 2007
United States border agents have stepped up scrutiny of Americans returning home from Mexico, slowing commerce and creating delays at border crossings not seen since the months after the Sept. 11 attacks.
The increased enforcement is in part a dress rehearsal for new rules, scheduled to take effect in January, that will require Americans to show a passport or other proof of citizenship to enter the United States. The requirements were approved by Congress as part of antiterrorism legislation in 2004.
Border officials said agents along the southern border were asking more returning United States citizens to show a photo identity document. At the same time, agents are increasing the frequency of what they call queries, where they check a traveler’s information against law enforcement, immigration and antiterror databases.