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Former ICE chief rips Biden over border: Is he right?

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Thomas Homan, who held key roles in ICE during the Obama and Trump administrations, slammed Joe Biden’s handling of the border crisis and the ongoing conflict with Governor Greg Abbott.

“I’ve seen six different administrations,” Homan said. “I’ve seen policies come and go. I see policies that failed and policies work, but as far as what Gov. Abbott is doing I’m 100% behind him,” he said.

“He has proven what the Trump administration did, that border barriers work and consequences work, ending catch release,” Homan continued.

via Fox News

Homan said that if the Biden administration worked with Texas on the matter, it would benefit both sides. “So why would they push back on the governor, who has proven success in Eagle Pass? Why not use the state of Texas as a force multiplier? The men and women of the Border Patrol love what the state of Texas is doing because they act as a force multiplier for them.”

In 2021, Abbott initiated Operation Lone Star to increase resources and personnel at the border due to his belief that the Biden administration was not effectively addressing the issue.

The operation involved various measures such as installing razor wire, deploying buoys, and implementing a new law allowing police to detain illegal immigrants, which faced opposition from the Biden administration and immigration advocates.

via CBS

Additionally, in January, Texas authorities took control of Shelby Park in Eagle Pass.

The White House accused Abbott of politicizing the border crisis, while arguing in court that Texas’ border security actions, including the anti-illegal immigration law, impede federal immigration enforcement efforts.

“[Texas’] efforts, through SB 4, intrude on the federal government’s exclusive authority to regulate the entry and removal of noncitizens, frustrate the United States’ immigration operations and proceedings, and interfere with U.S. foreign relations,” the Department of Justice said in its January lawsuit against the law.

via Fox News

“I would say, ‘Interfering with what enforcement? What are they interfering with?’” Homan said.

“I truly believe if the federal government’s going to abdicate their responsibility to secure the border and protect Texas, then Texas has to do it,” he said. “And what we’ve got to remember is Texas isn’t only protecting the citizens of Texas; 98% of the people aren’t staying in Texas, they’re going all over the country, so Gov. Abbott is actually protecting the entire country.”

“I think it’s a combination of the two. Border Patrol is good at what they do if they’re allowed to do it. We proved that under the Trump administration. But again, we had high numbers in the first two years of the Trump administration and the partnership of Texas was invaluable. So it’s best if everybody works together to secure the border,” Homan added.

“From day one it’s been political… they tried to tear down anything associated with Trump,” he said.

“Because, again, they’re a force multiplier, we have the same goal. Additional resources are always good on the border. So, of course, we’d have a partnership. Why would you not have a partnership with a force that has the same goals as you?” he concluded.

The U.S.-Mexico border crisis has become a pivotal issue in American politics, as the growing number of migrants entering the U.S. has strained government resources, divided Congress, and emerged as a contentious topic in the 2024 presidential campaign.

A recent study conducted by the Pew Research Center offers insights into public perspectives on this complex issue, shedding light on the factors behind the migrant influx, the seriousness of the situation, and potential policy improvements.

The study, based on a survey of 5,140 adults, revealed deep divisions among Americans regarding the factors contributing to the migrant influx. Economic opportunities in the U.S. and violence in migrants’ home countries were identified as major reasons for the surge, with 71% citing better economic opportunities and 65% noting violence as significant factors.

Economic Opportunities: There is a bipartisan consensus, with majorities in both parties acknowledging better economic prospects in the U.S. as a driving force.

Violence in Home Countries: Democrats and Democratic-leaning independents are notably more likely than Republicans and Republican leaners to cite violence in migrants’ home countries as a major reason for the influx.

The survey found that a substantial majority of Americans consider the large number of migrants seeking entry at the U.S.-Mexico border to be either a crisis or a major problem. Notably, Republicans are more inclined to describe the situation as a “crisis,” while Democrats predominantly view it as a major problem.

Economic Burdens: Approximately 22% of respondents expressed concerns about the economic strains associated with the migrant influx, including the impact on social services and government resources.

Security Concerns: An equal percentage highlighted security concerns, focusing on issues such as crime, terrorism, and drug-related challenges.

The federal government’s management of the border situation received overwhelmingly negative ratings, with just 18% expressing confidence in the government’s response. Both Republicans and Democrats conveyed significant dissatisfaction, with 73% of Democrats giving the government negative ratings, the highest share recorded during President Biden’s tenure.

The survey also assessed various policy proposals aimed at improving the border situation. While there was no single proposal that garnered majority support across party lines, increasing the number of immigration judges and staff to expedite asylum decisions received relatively broader agreement, with 60% viewing it as a potential improvement.

The border crisis has underscored the need for a holistic update to U.S. immigration laws, considering the demands of the labor market and the factors driving migration. The study emphasized the importance of aligning immigration policies with labor market needs, addressing root causes of migration, and upholding legal and humanitarian responsibilities.

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