Lawmakers Allege Biden Administration’s Role in Allowing Illegals to Cross
A surge of mostly Venezuelan illegal immigrants on September 20 resulted in the closure of two bridges as Customs and Border Protection (CBP) struggled to handle the overwhelming numbers. Lawmakers have accused the Biden Administration’s Department of Homeland Security (DHS) of cutting and removing Concertina wire and fencing, installed by state and local governments as a deterrent, thereby assisting the aliens in crossing illegally.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott had set up the border wire under Operation Lone Star to discourage illegal immigration. Texas subsequently sued the administration over the cutting of the border wire, and the case remains ongoing. While the DHS has refrained from commenting on the pending litigation, it has emphasized that Border Patrol agents are obliged under federal law to apprehend unauthorized individuals who cross into U.S. soil and to act when there are threats to the wellbeing of both their workforce and the migrants.
Judiciary Committee Republicans Demand Answers
Expressing concern about the crisis and the cutting of fences by Border Patrol, the Judiciary Committee Republicans wrote to DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas on November 6, seeking information. Despite a subsequent follow-up letter on November 22 from the DHS’ Office of Legislative Affairs, they have yet to receive an adequate response. The lawmakers highlighted the increasing frequency of migrant influxes, emphasizing the importance of the Committee’s oversight.
They have set a deadline of December 22 for the DHS to provide the requested information and warn that the Committee may resort to compulsory measures if the requests remain outstanding.
New Surge in Migrants at the Border
As lawmakers demand answers, a fresh surge in migrants at the border has occurred this week, setting a new record for daily encounters. More than 12,000 migrants were encountered at the border during this period, further exacerbating the already chaotic situation.
Meanwhile, negotiations are underway for supplemental spending, with discussions revolving around border security measures. The White House has requested $14 billion for border operations, but Republicans are pushing for stricter asylum standards and a reduced use of humanitarian parole.