EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Republican leader Kevin McCarthy led a congressional delegation to visit the border in El Paso and addressed what he says is a border crisis and “human heartbreak” due to policies made by the Biden Administration.
“There’s no other way to claim it than a Biden border crisis,” McCarthy said.
Several GOP House leaders began their tour in El Paso, starting at the El Paso Processing Center, then to Monument 3.
“We went through a new facility that was built just more than a year ago. They built it with a capacity they thought they could never meet — 1,040 people to be processed,” McCarthy explained. “Today, broke that record. Today, they’re beyond capacity. They’re having to build into the parking lot a makeshift facility.”
The Republican Congressional delegation addressed some issues such as a major increase of migrants illegally crossing the border and an increase of unaccompanied children.
Leaders said that 120 border agents were transferred to the processing unit because of this surge, and had to shift their focus from border security.
“They are not testing these individuals. We saw hundreds of hundreds of people in there today. Not one of them has had a COVID test. They’re transferring them to other places without COVID tests. Border Patrol agents are exposed every day to this. This is something that the president has caused with this surge,” said U.S. Rep. John Katko, Ranking Member on Homeland Security (NY-24).
Many representatives shared the concern of COVID-19 spreading from these border crossings.
“For our President to think opening the southern border to allow those coming in, and you just heard it, that are infected with or exposed to COVID, makes no sense at al. So this flatten the curve and all the work we’ve done as a country to get our kids educated, open up our economies and ensure that we’re doing the right thing to overcome the pandemic, opening the southern border makes no sense,” said U.S. Rep. Yvette Herrell (NM-02).
In a statement, the executive director of the Immigration Hub called the House Republicans’ visit to the border a “political stunt.”
“It’s no surprise that Rep. McCarthy and other Republicans are staging a tour of the southern border just days after President Biden signed the highly popular American Rescue Plan,” said Sergio Gonzales, Executive Director of the Immigration Hub. “Democrats delivered, and Republicans are scrambling to distract from their failures to offer any solution to the public health and economic crisis their constituents are confronting.”
GOP House leaders said they’re imploring the president and his administration to work together — Republicans and Democrats — to find ways to secure the border from these issues addressed and reverse policies.