U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), vice chairman of the Senate Republican Conference and a member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, wrapped up a firsthand visit to the Southern Border in McAllen, Texas, including a number of Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) facilities.
“There is absolutely no doubt in my mind that the crisis we’re facing at our southern border is real,” said Senator Joni Ernst. “Facilities are over capacity, the backlogs in asylum processing are skyrocketing, and our border patrol agents—who serve tirelessly 24/7—are being forced to forgo their enforcement duties due to the mass influx of migrants coming to our doorstep.
“The situation is tough and addressing it will not be easy nor will it happen overnight. Congress has taken a step toward helping the situation, and in a bipartisan way, by providing emergency funding for migrant care. As I saw this weekend, these funds have helped give additional support and resources to the facilities. But there is so much more work to be done.
“Providing care to migrants is a non-negotiable, but so is securing our border and permanently fixing the loopholes that exist in our current immigration system. Iowans across the state see and feel the effects of the tremendous flow of drugs pouring into this country, and we can all agree that this humanitarian crisis has to be remedied. Congress must act, and must do so now—and that includes our Democratic colleagues who are nowhere to be found when it comes to solutions to fix this crisis.”
Ernst spent all of Sunday, July 21, in McAllen, Texas and the surrounding area along the border. Starting at the Hidalgo Port of Entry, Ernst heard from DHS officials about the technology used to process citizens and non-citizens across the border and stop weapons and drug flow. During this stop, Ernst was able to tour the Port’s facility where they begin processing migrants who have come to the border seeking asylum.