Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas is facing backlash for assuring Americans that the southern border is “secure” amid record migrant encounters.
Several Republican lawmakers and former federal officials have said Mayorkas is peddling a lie as the border experiences large influxes of illegal migrants.
“This is one of the biggest lies of the Biden Administration,” Republican California Rep. Darrell Issa wrote on Twitter Wednesday.
“Secretary Mayorkas had the nerve to claim the border ‘is secure’ last night, while last month saw a historic 207,416 migrant encounters and 6 individuals on the terrorist watchlist,” Tennessee Sen. Marsha Blackburn said Wednesday.
Republican New York Rep. Claudia Tenney went so far as calling for Mayorkas to “resign or be impeached.”
Co-chair of the House Border Security Caucus Brian Babin pledged to hold Mayorkas accountable for his “lies, obfuscation and deceit” when Republicans take back the majority in Congress.
“Mayorkas claims southern border ‘is secure’ as over 200,000 a month ignore the law and skip the security checkpoints. Same guy is in charge of security at the White House and our airports. Think about that for a minute!!,” Scott tweeted.
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Mayorkas made the statement Tuesday at the Aspen Institute’s Aspen Security Forum.
“The border is secure. We are working to make the border more secure. That has been a historic challenge. I have said to a number of legislators who have expressed to me that we need to address the challenge at the border before they pass legislation and I take issue with the math of holding the solution hostage until the problem is resolved,” Mayorkas said.
The southern border has seen record numbers of migrants crossing into the country illegally. The number of migrants encountered in fiscal year 2022 has already surpassed the 1,734,686 encountered in fiscal year 2021, according to U.S. Customs and Border Protection statistics.
“There is work to be done. Safe and secure are two different words. There are smugglers that operate on the Mexican side of the border and placing one’s life in their hands is not safe,” he added.