Eagle Pass Crisis: Biden Administration Sends 800 Troops to Help as 10,000 Migrants Cross over in 24 Hour Period
Harriet Alexander, Daily Mail, September 21, 2023
Ten thousand migrants have crossed illegally into Eagle Pass, Texas, in the last 24 hours, triggering a state of emergency in the small border town where shelters and hospitals are now overrun.
Before sunrise this morning, another 250 were waiting to be processed. Hundreds more are expected today in what many residents say is the worst border crisis they have ever seen.
FOX News cites border patrol agents who say 10,000 have been ‘encountered’ in a single 24 hour period – one of the highest numbers ever seen.
The Biden administration has sent 800 troops to the border to assist Texas National Guardsmen who are already there.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott yesterday eviscerated President Biden for allowing the unfolding disaster. The only migrant shelter in the city, Mission Border Hope, has now been overrun with migrants.
Many fled from Venezuela and arrived in the US via Mexico. Eagle Pass Mayor Rolando Salinas declared a state of emergency yesterday, warning that the town’s hospitals are also becoming overwhelmed.
Yesterday, a three-year-old boy drowned while trying to cross the Rio Grande into Eagle Pass with his family.
The bridge between Eagle Pass and the Mexican city across the border, Piedras Negras, was closed on Wednesday so border agents could be redeployed to work on processing migrants.
Randy Clark, a retired Border Patrol agent, said the decision to close the border to those legally crossing back and forth showed the scale of the problem.
‘The only closure at the border is one of two ports of entry where legal residents and citizens cross. The inconvenience by DHS is reserved for legitimate trade and travel,’ he wrote on X.
‘No impediments on the constant flow of illegal traffic between the ports. ‘This government is on crazy pills!’
The line for processing illegal immigrants on Wednesday stretched for five miles on Wednesday, NewsNation reported, and wound its way back into Mexico.
Rolando Salinas, the mayor of Eagle Pass, said 2,500 people crossed into his town of 29,000 on Monday – and 7,200 the week before.
So far this year, the Del Rio sector of the border, in which Eagle Pass sits, has recorded 317,866 migrant ‘encounters’, the latest Border Patrol data shows.
The figure is a 15.5 percent decrease on the same time period last year, but Salinas said his town was still struggling.
‘It has taken a toll on our local resources, specifically our police force and our fire department,’ he said on Tuesday night.
‘I’ve been getting a lot of calls from our constituents that they get worried, they see a lot of people in our community.
‘But it is my understanding that some of these people, they don’t want to be there. So they’re leaving (the shelters), and they’re on our streets, and I understand the concerns of a lot of people.’
The Biden administration said it will send 800 active-duty military personnel to the border, to boost efforts by the 2,500 National Guardsmen already deployed to help Customs and Border Protection at the border.
Abbott, the Texas governor, said he was also sending additional members of the state National Guard.
He said the razor wire his team had installed along the banks of the river had been taken down: he deployed troops to reinstall it.
‘Texas installed razor wire in Eagle Pass to stop illegal crossings,’ said Abbott. ‘Today the Biden Admin CUT that wire, opening the floodgates to illegal immigrants.
‘I immediately deployed more Texas National Guard to repel illegal crossings & install more razor wire.’