Katelyn Caralle, Daily Mail, March 16, 2021
Joe Biden has yet to directly address the growing crisis at the southern border, instead, deflecting blame to former President Donald Trump‘s for ‘completely dismantling’ the previous immigration process.
‘The prior administration completely dismantled the asylum system. The system was gutted, facilities were closed, and they cruelly expelled young children into the hands of traffickers,’ Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas statement Tuesday morning.
The administration is moving thousands of male teen undocumented immigrants to the convention center in Dallas as detention centers have reached over 700 per cent capacity.
‘We have had to rebuild the entire system,’ Mayorkas continued in his Tuesday statement, ‘including the policies and procedures required to administer the asylum laws that Congress passed long ago.’
Biden promised during his campaign that all those seeking asylum would be granted it in the U.S. after Trump received a slew of criticism from progressives for his hard-line immigration policies.
Republicans, however, are demanding that Biden directly respond to the crisis and visit the southern border for himself.
On Tuesday, the president is jetting off on a tour promoting his $1.9 trillion coronavirus stimulus plan – to the ire of Republicans who claim Biden should be visiting the overflowing detention centers.
‘I know the president is going to travel this week,’ House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy said during a tour of the U.S.-Mexico border Monday with a dozen GOP lawmakers. ‘This is where you should bring Air Force One. This is where he should look the people in the eye. This is where he should talk to the border agents and let them know that this is beyond the crisis.’
‘He can continue to deny it, but the only way to solve it is to first admit what he has done, and if he will not reverse action, it’s going to take correct congressional action to do it,’ the California Republican congressman continued.
On Monday, 12 House Republicans – led by Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy –visited the border in El Paso, Texas.
They blame the influx in illegal border crossings and those seeking asylum on Biden’s executive order on Day One stopping construction of Trump’s border wall and his more lax view on immigration in general.
The White House has yet to refer to the situation at the border as a ‘crisis,’ despite overflowing centers and immigration agencies becoming so overwhelmed they had to call in FEMA and Red Cross volunteers to help.
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki conceded to the crisis as much as the administration has so far on Monday when calling the situation a ‘big problem’.
‘We recognize this is a big problem,’ Psaki told reporters during Monday’s briefing. ‘The last administration left us a dismantled and unworkable system and, like any other problem, we are going to do all we can to solve it.’
Democrtic Senator Joe Manchin, however, has called it a ‘crisis.’
‘It’s a crisis – oh it’s a crisis,’ the centrist West Virginia senator told Capitol Hill reporters Monday night.
Now, 3,000 immigrant teens are being moved to the Dallas Convention Center, an Associated Press report revealed Monday, as the administration searches for space to house the surge of immigrants showing up at the border since Biden took office.
Beginning as early as this week, the Kay Bailey Hutchison Convention Center will be used as a ‘decompression center’ for up to 90 days, according to a memo sent Monday to members of the Dallas City Council.
The thousands of immigrants who will be held there only include boys ages 15-17.
In February alone, authorities encountered people without legal status crossing the U.S.-Mexico border 100,000 times.
The move to the convention center is just another sign that the Biden administration is struggling to find space for a surge of migrant children and teens – numbers that are almost three times the levels seen around the same time in 2020.
The handling of the border crisis during Biden’s first few months in office is troubling to lawmakers as Congress prepares to take up immigration legislation.