OPINION

Congressman Smith Capitol Report: Biden’s Crisis

Jason Smith

Since being sworn in on January 20, Joe Biden has made clear that he is serious about prioritizing the rights and well-being of illegal immigrants over American citizens. Whether it is his words, his executive actions, or legislation he has signed into law, all his policies clearly incentivize people to try to cross our border illegally. Now, a crisis is here – and it’s a crisis of Joe Biden and his administration’s own making.

In the month of February, Customs and Border Patrol encountered over 100,000 persons attempting entry along the Southwest border, which is almost three times the number of migrants encountered in February 2020 and the highest level in five years. This problem is bad and only going to get worse.

But Washington Democrats are living in an alternative reality. When asked if this was a crisis, both White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki and Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas refused to call what every American is seeing with their own eyes a crisis. In fact, the Biden administration seems to be trying to distract the American people from the very real and serious situation that is unfolding in our country. Secretary Mayorkas’ response was particularly telling, stating that the White House was “critically sending an important message that now is not the time to come to the border.” So it’s not the illegal crossings that are the problem, but when they are occurring?

The current crisis was both predictable and preventable and is the direct result of Biden’s reckless policies and rhetoric. Since day one, he has abandoned construction of the border wall; reimplemented the “catch and release” program, which essentially allows criminal illegal immigrants to stay on U.S. soil; and reversed the previous administration’s “remain in Mexico” policy, which kept those seeking asylum and citizenship status on the other side of the border while their paperwork processed and our immigration system was allowed to function as intended. All of this was done with the stroke of a pen.

Combined with Joe Biden’s own words making clear he intended to reverse Donald Trump’s strong policies against illegal immigration, it’s no surprise that migrants are flocking to our border. And if the sheer number of migrants being encountered isn’t bad enough, just this week four known terrorists were captured trying to cross our border. Drug cartels and human traffickers are actively working to exploit weaknesses in our border security. Having the administration telegraph a policy of open borders is the worst possible message to send these criminals.

When you offer things like free healthcare to illegal immigrants, the ability to vote in our elections and even offer $1,400 stimulus payments, it’s a recipe for the humanitarian crisis that’s happening on our southern border.

As if the administration’s actions weren’t bad enough, Speaker Pelosi this week brought up two bills this week which provide amnesty to illegal immigrants. I strongly opposed these bills, and will continue to reject Washington Democrats’ policies of open borders and amnesty.

From day one, President Biden has focused on policies that harm the working class in favor of progressive open borders, anti-worker agenda. If President Biden and the Washington Democrats don’t stand for hardworking Americans and the rule of law, what do they stand for?

Congressman Jason Smith, R-MO, represents Rolla in Missouri’s Eighth Congressional District.