NASHVILLE, TN—United States Senator Bill Hagerty (R-TN), a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, yesterday joined Aishah Hasnie on Fox News Live to give his reaction to Friday’s court ruling blocking the Biden Administration from lifting Title 42 authority and discuss why he opposed the Ukraine aid package passed in the Senate this week.
Hagerty on Friday’s Title 42 ruling: “Well, all this ruling is is a stay of execution. We still have a massive crisis at the southern border. This past month saw the greatest number of illegal immigrants come into the country that we’ve ever seen. In my home state of Tennessee, we still have each month more overdoses and more deaths from fentanyl coming across that border than we’ve ever had before. It gets worse by the month. The Biden Administration is doing everything they can to transform America, and Title 42 is the last tool left for our border patrol agents to actually push back. Again, it’s a public health usage; I think the biggest public health crisis, frankly, is the deaths from overdoses that are being created here. Again, the biggest killer of young Americans between the ages of 18 and 45 right now in America is overdose deaths. The Biden Administration will not acknowledge it.”
Hagerty on Biden and Democrats’ refusal to address the crisis at the southern border: “I’m willing to work with the Democrats; I’m willing to work with anybody to get this problem fixed, but no one on the Democrat side will step up. I put forward legislation to actually expand Title 42 and to include among the public health crises that was trying to combat, drug overdose deaths and the concern of that. I couldn’t get a single Democrat to join me in that conversation. We’re going to continue to push on this, but as you say, Congress is ready to act at least on our side of the aisle to make Title 42 permanent, but also, we need to put the Migrant Protection Protocols back in place—that was actually working. Biden won’t even go to the border and address this crisis, and it’s really just crushing America.”
Hagerty on the need to reimplement successful Trump-era immigration policies: “That’s exactly what President Trump did when he implemented the Migrant Protection Protocols. He put a tremendous amount of pressure on the Mexican government. They actually began to patrol the border again. Now that border’s been ceded to the cartels. I think it’s going to be very difficult for Mexico to do anything without us putting pressure on them, but they should. They should do a lot more. And I think what we’ll see is, if we would go back to the policies that were working, we would have a tremendous impact on reducing this crisis. But instead, people are just piling up on the other side of the border. They are being turned away under Title 42, but the Biden Administration keeps sending signals that they’re going to do away with it. Again, if they do away with it, we’re going to see a tsunami of people coming in. It’s a crisis that will turn into a massive disaster.”
Hagerty on addressing crises in America first: “Ukraine can win the war, and we need to come up with a fully strategic approach to this. The best thing that we could do would be actually end the war on American energy here—that would defund Vladimir Putin’s war machine. That’s what we need to do first and foremost. The $40 billion that we’re sending over there right now—that’s the size of my state of Tennessee’s entire annual budget. There have to be limits to this. You know, the Biden Administration is willing to spend on things like this with very little oversight; very little details is involved in this. There isn’t an end game in sight. We should be walking side by side, marching side by side with our colleagues in Europe. They’re not stepping up to this level. Right now, we’re at parody with them, but with this $40 billion, we’re jumping way ahead of them—4X of what the Europeans are spending, and they’re more proximate to the problem. We need to be bringing them along. We need to be looking at this holistically. We need to be solving the energy crisis at the same time, and that would address inflation here at home.”