Posted on October 21, 2022

Mayorkas Alerted That No Haitian Migrants Were ‘Whipped’ Hours Before WH Press Conference

Bill Melugin and Adam Shaw, Fox News, October 12, 2022

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas was told that the photographer who captured a clash between Border Patrol agents and Haitian migrants in Del Rio had said that the incident was being misconstrued – hours before Mayorkas joined a White House press conference where he didn’t challenge the false narrative.

The Sept. 24, 2021 email, obtained by the Heritage Foundation via a Freedom of Information Act request (FOIA), shines light onto internal deliberations surrounding the controversy in Del Rio, Texas, where Democrats and the White House pushed a narrative that migrants had been “whipped” or “strapped” by Border Patrol agents despite it being quickly debunked.

In fact, agents were using split reins to control their horses as migrants rushed across the river. But a narrative, based on a misinterpretation of photographs, was running and on Sept. 24 was further fueled by President Biden.


The investigation is still ongoing more than a year later, but findings by the Office of Professional Responsibility in July found that no whips were in their possession and no migrant was struck by the reins – although it did find other alleged infractions.

But just hours after Biden made his inflammatory remarks to cameras, Marsha Espinosa, assistant secretary of DHS public affairs, emailed Mayorkas and cc’d other DHS leadership, alerting them to a news article that showed that the photographer who took the images did not see any whipping. In the email, Espinosa highlighted the comments from the photographer where he directly says he did not witness any whipping.

Two and a half hours after receiving that email, Mayorkas joined White House press secretary Jen Psaki at a White House press conference, where he continued to push the narrative:

“Our nation saw horrifying images that do not reflect who we are. We know that those images painfully conjured up the worst elements of our nation’s ongoing battle against systemic racism,” Mayorkas said.


The investigation found “no evidence” that agents struck migrants and found that they were not carrying whips. An agent was accused of using “denigrating and offensive” language against migrants regarding national origin and gender, and of having maneuvered a horse around a child in an “unsafe manner” – while agents were said to have used “unnecessary use of force” to drive the migrants back.

Federal sources say that the three horseback agents and supervisor are still facing discipline of between 3- to 14-day unpaid suspensions {snip}