In an interview with Fox News, Border Patrol Agent Hector Garza said that Congress needs to “get serious and stop rewarding illegal immigration.” His statement came after one of the busiest weeks of immigration history in Texas, which saw almost 1,700 illegal migrants attempt to cross the Rio Grande Valley border in one day.
During an interview with Fox & Friends on Thursday morning, Agent Garza, who spoke as Vice President of the National Border Patrol Council, said: “We have lost the ability to know who or what is coming across the border.”
“If you live in a poor country like those in Central America and you make your way into the United States knowing that you are going to be released into the United States, why wouldn’t these people come? That’s why Congress needs to get serious about this — they need to change the laws so that people are not encouraged to come into the United States (illegally),” stated Garza.
“We don’t know who or what is coming across because now our agents are having to process these people, transport them, feed them, care for them, and now we can’t even do our job of border security. That’s unacceptable,” explained Garza.
According to officials with the Border Patrol, more than 66,000 migrants were arrested while attempting to illegally cross the border in February. They’re now expecting more than 100,000 migrants will be apprehended in March.
While speaking at the Texas-Mexico border near El Paso, Texas, Kevin K. McAleenan, the commissioner of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, said: “On Monday, we saw the highest total of apprehensions and encounters in over a decade, with 4,000 migrants either apprehended or encountered at Ports of Entry in a single day. That was Monday.”
“Yesterday, we broke the record again with 4,117. We are now on pace for over 100 thousand apprehensions and encounters with migrants in March, with 90 percent of those, 90 thousand people, crossing the border illegally between Ports of Entry. March will be the highest month since 2008. The arriving flows are made up primarily of Central American families and unaccompanied children,” said McAleenan.
Garza then explained that the impact of the new Border Patrol policies calls for the near-immediate release of a large portion of the migrants that are currently being apprehended. “Out of those 100,000 that are going to be coming in during the month of March, 90 percent are being released into the community.” He explains that many of the migrants that are in custody have violent criminal records.
“A lot of these people do commit dangerous crimes. A lot of these people do bring serious diseases into our communities,” explained Garza. He continued by saying that many of the country’s Border Patrol agents have faced dangerous diseases at the processing centers.
“Congress needs to stop playing politics. They need to make sure that they pass laws and that they provide resources for Border Patrol agents so that we can prevent all of this mayhem that is happening on the border,” stated Garza.