The Obama administration has confirmed a large surge of illegal immigrants along America’s southern border less than a month before the presidential election that has thrust the issue onto the national stage.

The Department of Homeland Security published new statistics on Monday that confirmed at least 408,870 illegal aliens were apprehended along the U.S. southern border in fiscal year 2016, a 23 percent surge from this time last year.

The rate of juvenile illegal immigrants being apprehended on the border also has increased, according to the statistics, which show a 49 percent jump from similar periods in 2015.

The surge in illegal immigrants comes as leading members of Congress pursue an investigation into the precise number of individuals the Obama administration wrongly granted citizenship and immigration benefits.

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