OPINION

President Biden’s Border Crisis

Congressman Jake LaTurner / Special to the Morning Sun
Congressman Jake LaTurner

As a member of the Homeland Security Committee, I am deeply committed to securing our border, which I know is an integral part of our overall national security – a strong nation must have strong borders. Unfortunately, President Joe Biden’s immigration actions so far have shown a complete disregard for border security, abandoning many of President Trump’s successful border policies and posing a direct threat to all law-abiding Americans.

Immediately after taking office, President Biden made a unilateral decision to cease border wall construction. This irrational decision thwarted Congressional authority prioritizing a liberal agenda above the public good. The 450 miles of border wall construction completed under the Trump Administration were working to protect the American people, acting as a crucial tool to aid the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) in fulfilling their mission of safeguarding our borders.

As a result of the Biden Administration’s policies, we are also seeing a humanitarian and public health crisis develop right now at the southern border. According to the CBP, the number of migrants encountered at the border in the month of February climbed to more than 100,000, a 28 percent increase over January. Predictably, migrant facilities are now operating at far above the safe capacity levels approved by the Department of Health and Human Services, posing a grave threat to both migrants and the communities in which they are located.

The Biden Administration’s policies signal to the world that our immigration laws can be violated with little, if any, consequence. The Biden Administration has restored the senseless “catch and release” policies that President Trump worked hard to end, freeing violent criminals into our communities to wreak more havoc on law-abiding families. In just a few short months, the Biden Administration has made it a top priority to undo and block the hard work of Republican lawmakers to enforce immigration laws and keep Americans safe.

It is very clear why this is all happening. President Biden spent months campaigning on extremely laxed border policies. Then-candidate Biden proposed a 100-day pause on deportations of most illegal aliens. Thankfully, a federal judge blocked this action indefinitely, a warning sign about the dubious legality of the Biden Administration’s proposed immigration policies. Nevertheless, the rhetoric espoused by the Biden campaign has already done its damage. Thousands of people in Central America were led to believe they could come to America and simply walk across the border with no processing or consequences. Many arrived at the border wearing shirts with Joe Biden’s campaign logo that read “please let us in.” Now the Biden Administration is attempting to walk back their egregious mistakes. White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told the caravans traveling to the U.S. in recent weeks that “Now is not the time to come.” This constant flip-flopping by the Biden Administration does a disservice to both border patrol agents and would-be migrants who are being lied to by the White House.

President Biden and Senate Democrats recently unveiled legislation calling for a massive overhaul of our immigration system that rewards illegal aliens, hurts American workers, and punishes migrants who want to come to our country legally. In a blind effort to erase the entire legacy of his predecessor, President Biden is moving America backwards on immigration and threatening our national security in the process. The President’s proposal will grant amnesty to the more than 11 million people who came to our country illegally. The message this sends is clear – you can break the laws of the United States and be rewarded with citizenship.

If we make the inexcusable mistake of granting mass amnesty like Democrats are proposing, there will be another massive surge in illegal immigration to our country. When that inevitable surge occurs, our labor market will be even more inflated at a time when our country faces an unemployment crisis. Wages would bottom out and Americans impacted by the pandemic would remain jobless for even longer. According to the Department of Labor, there are nearly 10 million American citizens out of work right now. Our focus should be getting those Americans back to work before allowing a massive influx of cheap labor from other countries.

President Biden’s proposal also undermines a core value of American life – the rule of law. This principle has guided and sustained our country for more than two centuries. If we reward unlawful migration with the greatest honor anywhere in the world – American citizenship – we will erode the legitimacy of our immigration system. What message would that send to the millions around the world who play by the rules, respect our laws, and are waiting their turn to come to our country for the chance at a better life?

The United States of America is the most generous nation in the history of the world for immigrants, and we should continue to be. However, we should always do so with respect to our laws. Our legal immigration system strengthens our society and contributes to the greater good, which is why I will oppose any effort by President Biden and Democrats to undermine it.

The opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the editorial staff of the Morning Sun.