Even Obama’s Immigration Chief Knows That ‘By Any Measure’ There’s a Crisis at the Border

April 4, 2019 Updated: April 4, 2019

Commentary

Barack Obama’s right-hand man on immigration proved that a cursory review of verifiable data can prove what most Democrats and members of the media are denying: We are in a major humanitarian and security crisis on our border that keeps getting worse and worse.

Former Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson broke with the Democrat Party and admitted what everyone else already knows. “By anyone’s definition, by any measure, right now, we have a crisis at our southern border,” Johnson said on March 30.

“On Tuesday, there were 4,000 apprehensions. I know that 1,000 [apprehensions] overwhelms the system and I cannot begin to imagine what 4,000 a day looks like,” Johnson noted. “That is by far a greater number than anything I saw on my watch in my three years as Secretary of Homeland Security.”

Border Patrol officials were on pace to make more than 100,000 apprehensions in March, the highest monthly tally in more than a decade, with around 90 percent of those illegal immigrants crossing the border in places other than legal ports of entry.

At the Catholic Charities Humanitarian Respite Center in McAllen, Texas, immigration organizers are used to handling 200 to 300 migrants a day. Lately, however, around 800 migrants have been arriving each day, overflowing into the city.

“It’s staggering,” McAllen City Manager Roy Rodriguez said. “Really, we’ve never seen anything like this before.”

According to Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan, the situation on the southern border has hit “a breaking point.”

There is, of course, a real crisis, as President Donald Trump has been describing for months, which led him to declare a national emergency in February. The combination of warm weather and a booming U.S. economy, furthermore, are creating strong incentives for illegal immigration, and America’s loosely written immigration laws provide a loophole for those would-be immigrants to gain access to the country by claiming asylum.

The Wall Street Journal reported that “a genuine crisis is building at the southern border as the perverse incentives of U.S. asylum law invite a surge of migrants that is overwhelming border security.”

Although only a little more than 20 percent of asylum claims are ultimately determined to have merit, the law prevents asylum-seekers from being deported until their claims are adjudicated, which can take months or years. In the meantime, the migrants are allowed to roam freely within our borders.

No matter how loudly Democrats deny it, the immigration crisis on our southern border isn’t going away—in fact, it’s getting worse. Their denial of this growing crisis has real consequences for the U.S. people. In 2017, more Americans died from illegal drugs—most of which come through the southern border—than were killed during the entirety of the Vietnam War.

Sound immigration laws shouldn’t be a partisan issue, because border security is in the interest of every U.S. citizen. By every reasonable measure, there is a massive crisis that can no longer be denied.

Harlan Hill is a political advisor, media commentator, and an advisory board member of the Donald J. Trump for President, Inc.

Views expressed in this article are the opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times.

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