‘Instead of buying plane tickets to send illegal immigrants back to their home country, ICE will now be buying plane tickets to send them to a town near you or me,’ Hagerty says
WASHINGTON—United States Senator Bill Hagerty (R-TN) today led a press conference at the U.S. Capitol to call out President Joe Biden for demanding that legislation to keep the government open include a provision that defunds Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and reallocates its funds to resettle illegal immigrants across the nation.
Hagerty: “First, I’d like to set the stage, if I might, because the United States is in the midst of a border crisis like nothing we’ve ever seen before.
“And the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, in case the White House missed it, in their own executive summary lists the facts—this is the 2024 executive summary for the Department of Homeland Security’s Threat Assessment of the United States—it lists the fact that they expect illegal drugs purchased in Mexico and sold to the United States will continue to kill more Americans than any other threat. This is from the Department of Homeland Security’s Executive Summary. I encourage you all to read it. It’s a threat that we all feel in my home state of Tennessee. We’re losing people every day to fentanyl.
“We’ve got more encounters of people on the terrorist watch list than ever before coming across the border. In fact, well over 170 different nationalities have been apprehended crossing the border illegally since Joe Biden took office.
“We have a national security threat of epic proportion [on] our border. Yet, at the same time, this White House is so unserious about it, that they’re actually proposing to defund ICE as a condition to continue to keep the government open beyond September 30.
“If you don’t believe me, take a look at page 51 of the language that is appended to their ‘clean CR’. On page 51, it gives them the authority to reprogram all of ICE’s funding, over $8 billion, to reprogram that and turn ICE into a resettlement agency. All of these funds can be reprogrammed to more rapidly push people into America. Instead of buying plane tickets to send people that have come here illegally—often many of them with violent criminal records—instead of buying plane tickets to send them back to their home country, ICE will now be buying plane tickets to send them to a town near you or me.
“This is egregious. It’s got to stop, and I’m glad that my colleagues have joined me today to bring attention to what’s happening at our southern border.”