By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily
U.S. Sen. John Barrasso told his Senate colleagues this week there are two crises currently going on at the U.S./Mexico border: humanitarian and national security.
Barrasso spoke on the Senate floor Monday where he discussed his recent trip, along with 18 other senators, to the southern border to see the immigration crisis firsthand.
“In fact, it’s not just one crisis: it’s a double crisis. It’s a national security crisis as well as a humanitarian crisis,” the senator said. ““We spoke to the Border Patrol agents. They told us their jobs got an awful lot harder on Jan. 20, when Joe Biden became president of the United States.”
Earlier this month, Barrasso said Border Patrol agents told him the Trump administration’s “Remain-In-Mexico” policy – which President Biden canceled on the first day of his presidency – was working to stem the surge of illegal immigrants into the U.S.
On the Senate floor, the senator added he and his colleagues heard traffickers from the Mexican side of the border taunting and catcalling Border Patrol agents during late night patrols.
He said Biden sent a clear message around the world that the U.S. border was now “wide open.”
“Because of that clear message, Border Patrol arrests and detentions have doubled since January,” Barrasso said.
He also suggested resuming construction on a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico that was launched under the administration of President Donald Trump.
“[Republicans] want to finish the wall, and we want to bring back the ‘Remain in Mexico’ policy,” Barrasso said. “We want to stem this humanitarian crisis and national security crisis that is facing our nation today. It’s time to bring this crisis to an end.”
Barrasso has been regularly critical of Biden’s immigration policies, both during last year’s presidential campaign and after the president took office in January.