Leads GOP colleagues in press conference on Biden border crisis
WASHINGTON—On Wednesday, U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), member of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, led a press conference along with Sens. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), John Kennedy (R-La.), James Lankford (R-Okla.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), Rick Scott (R-Fla.), and John Thune (R-S.D.), discussing the policy failures of the Biden administration at the southern border.
Sen. Ron Johnson: “When I was chairman of Homeland Security, we called that apprehensions. But even back then, people were being apprehended, processed and dispersed. Now the processing and dispersing is happening so quickly, they're just calling it encounters. But over two million in calendar year 2021. Known got aways, now the 344,000, so a total of 2.4 million people in 2021 came to this country illegally. About a little more than a million have returned, so over 1.2 million people are in this country, undocumented illegally. And quite honestly, we really don't know where they are. 1.2 million people.”
“Put that in perspective, that’s a number that is larger than the population of eight states. And again, we don't even know how many unknown got aways there were. We don't know the extent of the human trafficking. Although we do know, and by the way, Senator or Vice President Harris ought to know, because she was on my committee when we had testimony that children have been sold for $84 by the human traffickers to create a family unit to exploit our asylum laws.”
“We have no idea the extent of sex trafficking. Although I do know, having gone down with Democratic colleagues down to Guatemala, I've seen the shelters for sex trafficked little girls. We know they are given birth control because so many will be sexually assaulted on this dangerous journey. We have no idea the full extent of the drug trafficking. We have no idea the extent of all the gangs and gang members that are coming in here and populating and increasing the number of gangs in our inner cities. We also have no idea how many SIAs – I first heard that term by General Kelly when he was head of the Southern Command – Special Interest Aliens.”
“We have heard reports of people from 100 different countries coming into this country illegally. That represents a significant threat to national security. So the bottom line is, this didn't just happen. This out-of-control flow of illegal immigration, this crisis at the border, is a direct result of President Biden's policies aided and abetted by Democrats here in Congress. We've held three votes on the floor of the Senate to just build the wall. It's important to recognize we are spending more not building the wall than having completed it. That's a travesty.”
The senator concluded, “Just to reinforce a couple points, I encourage all of you to take this graph. I mean, it shows the macro impact, but it also shows the cause and effect of all these policies. Again, this didn't just happen. This is the policy. We talked about the depredations of the illegal flow, the human trafficking, the sex trafficking, the drug trafficking. Understand that President Biden's policies are facilitating the business model of some of the most evil people on the planet. It's incredibly important to understand what's happening and what the impact is of the policies. And finally, just to put in one more perspective on here, combined with the known got aways, we're talking about, on average, 6500 people per day for the entire year crossing into this country illegally. That's a large caravan every day. It has completely overwhelmed Customs and Border Patrol, which is why they've turned their back on this administration and Secretary Mayorkas because this administration has turned their back on law enforcement.”
Earlier this week, Sen. Johnson sent a letter to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas requesting additional information on DHS enforcement of immigration laws. Specifically, the senator requested information on encounters and “got aways” at the southwest border.