Lawmakers from both sides of the aisle weighed in on the migrant rush in El Paso, Texas, on Sunday, with one asking in “what world” does a rush like it “not catch” the eye of the president.
Sunday saw a group of at least 1,000 mainly Venezuelan illegal migrants rush the Paso Del Norte bridge connecting El Paso, Texas, and Mexico in an attempt to enter the United States.
Crowd control measures were used when the group of mainly Venezuelan migrants continued to press forward, though according to sources at the border, the efforts were thwarted.
BORDER CRISIS: OVER 1,000 MIGRANTS RUSH BRIDGE LINKING MEXICO TO US IN EL PASO, TEXAS
Texas lawmakers shared their thoughts on the surge, with Republican Rep. August Pfluger blasting President Biden for not viewing the rush as a national security threat in a statement to Fox News Digital.
“In what world do 1,000 foreign nationals rushing the sovereign border not catch the eye of the President of the United States as a national security threat?” Pfluger said.
“Republicans are pleading with Biden and Mayorkas to work with us to secure the border,” he continued, referencing the Homeland Security secretary.
Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Texas, told Fox News Digital that Sunday’s “surge at the border is the direct result of President Biden and Secretary Mayorkas’s irresponsible governance.”
“This administration publicly promotes lax border enforcement policies that leave America vulnerable while constricting the number of migrants allowed from countries like Venezuela,” Sessions said. “Their clashing narratives put our brave border patrol officers in danger and perpetuate our nation’s border crisis.”
“Biden and Mayorkas must change their tune to restore our rule of law at the southern border,” he continued.
“How can anyone watch those videos without thinking there’s a full-blown invasion at our southern border?” Texas GOP Rep. Troy Nehls told Fox News Digital.
“In the 20-second video Bill Melugin posted, I didn’t see many families storming the border. I saw military-aged males trying to cross into the United States illegally,” Nehls continued.
“With a complete disregard for our laws, what makes anyone think they’ll follow the law once they’re here in America?” the former sheriff asked.
El Paso Rep. Veronica Escobar, D-Texas, tweeted that she has been in contact with U.S. Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) leadership amid the chaos.
“As the reports of the chaotic events at our ports unfolded, I have remained in contact with local [CBP] leadership,” Escobar tweeted.
“Those of us who live and work on the border understand how broken our immigration system is,” she continued.
Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, told “Fox and Friends” on Monday that the rush “is exactly [what] President Biden’s open border policies are inviting.”
“The attorney general, Merrick Garland, acknowledged this as part of a plan of the cartels – transnational organization – to get richer who was funneling because they overwhelmed the border and Border Patrol and here comes the drug that took 108,000 American lives alone,” Cornyn said.
“This is part of the plan and President Biden is not prepared. Unfortunately, he insists on not working with Congress to solve that problem,” Cornyn continued. “I’m ready and able to work with him but it seems like he wants to go at it alone. So far, it’s not working.”
Cornyn also said he thinks “part of the president’s policies are attracting more of the illegal immigration and the perception that there are no consequences associated coming here outside of legal immigration channels.”
HOUSE DEMS PROPOSE BILL TO GRANT AMNESTY TO MILLIONS OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS
Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, a Republican, called video footage of the rush “stunning” and warned that future rushes will keep happening if the border is not secured.
“Mad rushes like this will continue to happen so long as illegal aliens think the American president doesn’t give a damn about law and order,” Cruz wrote.
Videos show migrants of all ages pressing toward the fenced border, with some putting their hands in the air to encourage others to continue moving forward.
Another video shows the moment the migrants pushed onto the bridge and began running for freedom, with a sign above the read, “Feliz Viaje,” or, happy travels.
In a third video, migrants were seen gathering on a smaller bridge, while others were observed lining up along the riverbank.
Customs and Border Protection increased manpower in the area on the U.S. side, while the Mexican military attempted to contain the incident on the southern side of the bridge.
Republicans have blamed the increase in encounters on the Biden administration after it rolled back Trump-era policies like the Remain-in-Mexico policy, ended wall construction and narrowed interior ICE enforcement.
The Biden administration has pushed back on those accusations and has accused Republicans of failing to vote for more border funding and not supporting a sweeping immigration reform proposal introduced on day one of the administration.
In his State of the Union address, President Biden again appealed for Republicans to pass parts of the bill, but lawmakers have balked at the inclusion of a pathway to citizenship for illegal immigrants, which Democrats have indicated is a must.
Last week, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador threatened to launch an “information campaign” in the U.S. against Republicans, telling Mexicans and Hispanics not to vote for them unless U.S. lawmakers change their treatment of Mexico – an apparent threat of election interference by the head of state in response to U.S. calls for action against cartels smuggling fentanyl across the border.
The Mexican leader was responding to calls for action from Republican lawmakers, including military action, to crack down on the continuing smuggling of fentanyl into the U.S.
Fox News Digital’s Greg Wehner, Bill Melugin, and Adam Shaw contributed reporting.
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