After historical surges in immigration this last month, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas testified before the Senate Homeland Security Committee Thursday. Republican members were finally able to ask Mayorkas direct questions about the ongoing crisis.
First, when ranking member Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) brought out a chart to display the surge, Mayorkas attempted to reiterate President Biden’s sentiments, blaming it on the previous administration. Portman pointed again to the numbers.
“Don’t blame the previous administration for not having facilities that they didn’t need because they didn’t have the surge,” Portman said.
Next, Sen. James Lankford (R-OH) asked the secretary to address the amount of people who have crossed the border and not received a court date for their immigration hearing.
“We understand there’s been 19,000 individuals that have crossed the border this calendar year that were not given a notice to appear [in court,]” Lankford said. “Is that correct?”
“I am not aware of that number,” Mayorkas replied.
Then, Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) asked Mayorkas if he would call the situation a crisis. “It seems Mr. Secretary that you’re proud of the progress made by the administration” the Utah senator asked. “I see an extraordinary crisis! Do you recognize this as an alarming crisis? Is this not a massive failure that would suggest that the administration needs to take immediate action to remedy what we’re seeing here?”
“We have taken immediate action with respect to the unaccompanied children,” Mayorkas responded, refusing to call the situation a crisis.
After, Sen. Thomas Carper (D-DE) pointed out improvement in the processing of these children. Just in April, the average unaccompanied child found at the border was in Border Patrol custody for 139 hours. Now, on May 11, children were in Health and Human Services’ custody for only 26 hours.
But, even the Democrat senator had to point out a glaring problem when it comes to immigration. The United States has no ambassador for the countries of Honduras or El Salvador. Honduras is the number two nationality among migrants crossing in recent months. As many as 38,000 arrived at the border in April alone. Over 11,000 migrants were from El Salvador, making it the fourth most represented nationality.
“We have not had a US ambassador to Honduras for four years,” Carper said. “For four years!”
“We’re very focused on that,” Mayorkas said.
Finally, Sen. Rick Scott (R-FL) talked about his own visit to the border and pointed out that neither the President or the Vice President have visited the border after over 100 days in office.
“Are you disappointed that President Biden and VP Harris have not taken the time to come to the border?” Scott asked.
“Absolutely not,” Mayorkas said. He claimed the responsibility for visiting the border himself, and said he’s been many times since.
You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism
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Migrants sick of waiting, surge border after judge temporarily blocks Biden from revoking Title 42
Del Rio Sector Chief Patrol Agent Jason D. Owens tweeted recently, on May 17, that agents under his command apprehended 2,849 migrants last weekend. However, as migrants no longer want to wait for Title 42 to end, they have surged the border.
In a Breitbart exclusive, the media outlet reported the “number will be eclipsed as it appears the total could approach 4,000 this weekend.” Unfortunately, “the migrants did not appear to know or understand that the Title 42 will not end on Monday due to a federal court order. They expressed they were simply tired of waiting” the report adds.
Between April 1st and May 15 of this year, approximately 513,000 migrants illegally crossed the southern border.
Breitbart notes “whether Title 42 ends or not, migrants say they are tired of waiting and surged across the Rio Grande into the Eagle Pass, Texas, area of operations. As many as 3,600 crossed so far this weekend — eclipsing last weekend’s total of just over 2,800 migrant apprehensions in the Del Rio Sector — according to a source operating within U.S. Customs and Border Protection.”
In just a couple of hours on Sunday evening, agents apprehended more than 700 migrants. Agents identified majority of the migrants as Honduran nationals, and some as Colombian.
One source told Breitbart resources were not available to transport migrants from the border to the processing station. It also appears the NGOs who regularly shelter the migrants are overloaded as migrants are reportedly being dropped off at an Eagle Pass Stripes convenience store.
“The crossings are not without danger. On Saturday, seven migrants were swept off their feet in the middle of the night forcing Border Patrol agents to jump into action to save their lives” Breitbart Texas reported. Those seven were lucky, whereas the bodies of three migrants were recovered at the Del Rio Sector.
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