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Senator Katie Britt (R-Ala.) introducing a package of four pieces of legislation to compel senate colleagues to acknowledge the security crisis at the U.S. – Mexico border, protect American communities, close asylum loopholes, and fund completion of the border wall

“There is an unprecedented humanitarian and national security crisis at our southern border,” Britt said in a press release. “This is a direct, avoidable result of the Biden Administration’s dangerously weak policies. Hardworking parents across our nation want their children to grow up in safe, strong communities, so that they can reach their full potential and live their American Dream. This legislation would help secure that dream for families in every corner of our country.”

The first piece of Britt’s border security legislative package is a simple resolution that would act as a straight-forward acknowledgment that there is a crisis on the southern border. The resolution is cosponsored by Senators John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Deb Fischer (R-Nebr.), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.), James Risch (R-Idaho), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Eric Schmitt (R-Mo.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.).

“We have to acknowledge the problem before we can solve it, but President Biden hasn’t even been willing to do that,” Senator Britt said. “With a record number of Americans dying from fentanyl poisoning, record deaths among migrants attempting to cross the border, record profits by the cartels, and a record amount of people on the terrorism watchlist apprehended at the border, there is no doubt that this is a crisis unlike which we have ever seen.”

The second piece of the package is a bill, the “Keep Our Communities Safe Act,” to close the Obama-Biden catch-and-release policy that requires the federal government to release illegal aliens into the United States’ interior after detaining them for six months, if no other country accepts them for deportation.

The Keep Our Communities Safe Act is cosponsored by Senators John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Deb Fischer (R-Nebr.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.), James Risch (R-Idaho), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), Eric Schmitt (R-Mo.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), John Thune (R-S.D.), and Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.).

The third piece of the package is the Asylum Abuse Reduction Act, a four-pronged bill to fix America’s asylum process. It would require migrants to declare asylum at a U.S. embassy or consulate in Mexico or Canada before entering the US; create a criminal bench warrant for aliens that have failed to appear for immigration court; codify the Trump Administration’s Third Country Asylum Rule; and establish a fix to the Flores Settlement Agreement.

Cosponsors of the Asylum Abuse Reduction Act are Senators John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), John Boozman (R-Ark.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Mike Crapo (R-Idaho), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), Markwayne Mullin (R-Okla.), James Risch (R-Idaho), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), John Thune (R-S.D.), and Thom Tillis (R-N.C.).

The fourth and final piece of the package is the WALL Act, which would expend funds to complete building the wall on the southern border and pay for this expenditure by eliminating the entitlement benefits and tax credits that illegal immigrants are using and fining those making illegal entry into the United States.

“It is critical that we end incentives and loopholes that are encouraging immigrants to break the law and game the system,” Senator Britt commented. “The status quo has led to a tidal wave of people coming across our border. It is imperative that we fix the process to eliminate asylum abuse and ensure legitimate asylum claimants are processed in a timely fashion.”

Cosponsors of the WALL Act are Senators John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), James Risch (R-Idaho), Mike Rounds (R-S.D.), and Roger Wicker (R-Miss.).

“We need to seal and secure the border – at ports of entry and between them – through a combination of physical infrastructure, technology, equipment, and personnel,” Senator Britt said. “An invaluable piece of this equation is finishing the wall on our southern border. This is a commonsense measure that funds this construction without raising taxes on American citizens or adding to the national debt.”

Britt’s fellow senator from Alabama, Tommy Tuberville, praised Britt’s bill for striving to end what he describes as a “Catch and release” approach to detainees who illegally crossed the border.

“The Biden administration’s open-border, catch-and-release policies have created a crisis that threatens the safety of local communities and our national security,” Tuberville said. “The Keep Our Communities Safe Act addresses the deliberate enforcement void created by President Biden by giving the Department of Homeland Security the discretion to detain illegal immigrants awaiting deportation and barring criminals from being released into the country. This bill closes loopholes that overwhelm law enforcement and endanger Americans,”

West Virginia Senator Shelley Moore Capito and Florida Senator Marco Rubio applauded Britt’s legislation, calling the current illegal immigration issue a crisis.

“Let’s be clear: The record level of illegal immigration we have seen is the result of failed policies throughout the first two years of the Biden administration,” Capito said. “It took too long for the administration to act on the border, and it took too long for the president to go and see the crisis he created. It’s past time we establish what this truly is – a sustained crisis on our southern border.”

Senator Rubio also criticized inaction by President Biden. The crisis at our southern border escalates by the day, putting American families at risk,” Rubio said. “Yet, the Biden Administration continues to do nothing to secure our border, and instead, releases illegal aliens into our communities. Congress has to take common sense steps to restore order and prevent violent crime,” .

Arkansas Senator Tom Cotton noted the unusually-high number of illegal immigrants entering the U.S. since President Biden took office. “By refusing to secure the border, Joe Biden has added 6 million illegal immigrants to the country in just two years, “Cotton said. “Our bills will help stop both bogus asylum seekers and the release of criminal aliens into our communities.”

Matt O'Hern

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