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OPINION: Biden Created Disorder at the Border

By Rep. John Katko

Date:

Rep. John Katko (R–Camillus), ranking member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, speaks at a news conference in Washington, D.C. on March 11 to discuss what he says is the crisis at the U.S. border with Mexico. (PHOTO CREDIT: KATKO PRESS OFFICE)

What we are witnessing [currently at the U.S. border with Mexico] of course is “Biden’s Border Crisis.” If you want to think of it another way, it’s disorder at the border by executive order.

President Biden’s knee-jerk reversal of productive, effective border-security policies from the previous administration was a political calculation that has created a humanitarian, security, and public-health crisis. 

We are a nation of laws, but instead of enforcing the law, the administration has chosen to: 

• Halt border-wall construction already funded by Congress

• Implement “catch and release” policies, allowing migrants to flow into American communities amidst a pandemic

• lEiminate the critical “Remain in Mexico Policy”

• Cancel asylum cooperative agreements with our Central American partners

That’s what they’ve done. What they haven’t done is admit that it’s caused a crisis.

 The facts speak for themselves.

Fact: Last month U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) encountered over 100,000 individuals seeking to cross the Southwest border, a 28 percent increase in just one month and 173 percent higher than the same time a year ago. 

Fact: U.S. Customs and Border Protection currently encounters an average of more than 3,000 individuals a day. When Jeh Johnson was Secretary of Homeland Security, he said that 1,000 apprehensions a day was a “bad number.” 

Fact: Hundreds of border-patrol agents are being diverted from interior drug checkpoints and the northern and coastal borders to the Rio Grande Valley. The administration is even asking people to volunteer to help with this crisis. You can’t come from England by plane. If you fly from Mexico by plane, you first must have a test to show you are COVID-free. Yet you can walk across the border and come right in. What is wrong with us? What are we doing?

The high volume of unaccompanied children encountered at the border continues to rise. Reports indicate that CBP is projecting a peak of 13,000 unaccompanied children crossing the border per month by May. HHS facilities are reaching capacity, so they’re checking with NASA and DOD to find facilities to house these children coming across the border because Biden put a “come on in” sign on the border. That is not right.

All of this was predictable. These politically motivated policies have created a crisis that must be reversed. As I said, there is disorder at the border because of his executive order.                

Rep. John Katko (R–Camillus), 58, represents the 24th Congressional District of New York in the U.S. House of Representatives. The district includes all of Onondaga, Cayuga, and Wayne counties and a portion of Oswego County. This article is drawn from a news release his office issued on March 11. It contained his remarks, as prepared for delivery, at a news conference in Washington, D.C. that day, to discuss what he says is the crisis at the U.S. border with Mexico.

 

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