Rep. Estes and Republican Colleagues Demand Answers for Southern Border Crisis

Washington, January 21, 2022 | Roman Rodriguez (316-262-8992)

WASHINGTON ­– Rep. Ron Estes (R–Kansas) joined more than 100 Republican colleagues in sending a letter to the Office of Inspector General for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to conduct a comprehensive review of the decisions by the Biden Administration that have led to the worst border crisis in United States history. 

“Over the past year, President Biden’s policies allowed our southern border to turn into utter chaos,” said Rep. Estes. “With critical border enforcement measures removed and offering amnesty to those here illegally, there have been record-breaking numbers of illegal immigrant crossing. As a member of the border security caucus, I’ve seen firsthand the distress that Biden’s open border policy brings to states that share a border with Mexico and the accompanying national security risk it has for the entire country.”

In the letter, the lawmakers requested a full accounting of the 2021 crisis on the Southern Border, including a breakdown of illegal immigrants encountered, apprehended, and released into the United States, as well as DHS vetting procedures, involvement with nonprofit organizations (NPOs), and communications with the White House transition team regarding the consequences of undoing the former Trump administration’s immigration policies.

“If not for a deep desire to serve the American public, it would be nearly impossible for rank-and-file Border Patrol Agents to put on a uniform day in and day out in an attempt to secure this great nation’s borders. Against the direct will of the American people, President Biden has made the securing of our borders impossible. Instead, his policies have allowed criminal cartels to advertise their services throughout the world with the promise that illegal border crossers will be allowed to remain in the United States without fear of deportation. This has caused severe human misery as vulnerable women and children put themselves in the hands of dangerous smugglers and human traffickers to be physically and sexually abused and, at times, even murdered. The historic high in illegal border crossings has forced the Border Patrol to dedicate more than 50% of its resources to activities other than patrolling the border. The gaps in the Border Patrol’s coverage have led to a huge increase in the flow of hard narcotics into the U.S., which is wreaking havoc on the lives of our children as drug overdose deaths continue to soar. It starts with policy, and President Biden’s policies have made our borders the least secure in our nation’s history. It is time the Biden Administration recognizes that not one more U.S. citizen should be victimized at the hands of criminal illegal aliens. The Administration’s main responsibility is to our safety and prosperity, rather than to that of foreign nationals who knowingly and willfully violate our laws. I am grateful for the oversight role Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and Senator Rick Scott are taking from the standpoint of a co-equal branch of government in trying to ensure the safety and security of all U.S. citizens by securing our borders. I live this nightmare every day, and I can personally and unequivocally state that this crisis is man-made and falls squarely on President Biden’s shoulders,” said Brandon Judd, President of National Border Patrol Council.

“Since taking office, President Biden and his administration have caused a border crisis of record proportions. Their America Last border policy has eroded the rule of law and caused incalculable harm to the American people — the Biden administration must be held to account for this disaster. Fortunately, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and Senator Rick Scott are taking action by demanding answers from the DHS OIG. We applaud their oversight efforts and demand that the administration explain their actions to the American people,” said Garrett Bess, Vice President of Heritage Action.

“The Biden administration has recklessly abandoned all forms of immigration enforcement at our southern border, triggering a crisis with no end in sight. At the same time, they refuse to properly comply with congressional oversight requests. The American people deserve to know the impact of the border crisis on their families and communities, while lawmakers need the ability to effectively draft legislation to end it. That is why it is encouraging to see lawmakers in both chambers call on the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of the Inspector General to answer detailed questions surrounding the Biden administration’s dismantling of immigration enforcement. We are in desperate need of information illustrating the dramatic surge in unauthorized border crossings, including the number of illegal aliens that the administration releases into the country, and whether or not they acted intentionally to create crisis conditions. FAIR applauds Congresswoman Elise Stefanik and Senator Rick Scott for their leadership on this issue, as well as everyone who signed on to this important, bicameral fact-finding mission,” said Dan Stein, President of the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR).

Read the full letter here.

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