OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
House Speaker Mike Johnson will attempt to keep his momentum going next week with the introduction of legislation aimed at forcing President Joe Biden’s administration to finally get serious about securing U.S. borders using former President Donald Trump’s playbook.
“Last week, in his first act as speaker, he brought a resolution to the floor condemning the Oct. 7 Hamas terror attacks and reaffirming U.S. support for Israel,” The Western Journal reported on Saturday. “This week, Johnson vowed to get to work with his House colleagues to finally shore up the country’s wide-open southern border.”
In a Thursday appearance on the Fox Business Network with host Larry Kudlow, Johnson expressed concerns about the massive flow of illegal immigrants into the country, saying there are likely individuals streaming across the border who want to harm Americans.
Kudlow noted that even Democrats, including Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, are admitting that his boss’s lax border enforcement policies are potentially allowing terrorists into the country.
“All of that was completely foreseeable when they opened up the border under Mayorkas’ direction and President [Joe] Biden himself,” Johnson said. “They allowed for this serious situation that we have.”
He also pointed out that FBI Director Christopher Wray warned lawmakers last week that his agency was increasingly worried about a heightened risk of terrorism within U.S. borders.
“The reality is that the terrorism threat has been elevated throughout 2023, but the ongoing war in the Middle East has raised the threat of an attack against Americans in the United States to a whole other level,” Wray told the Senate Homeland Security Committee earlier in the week.
“Well, yeah, of course, when you keep the border open and you allow dangerous people to come in, you open yourselves up for that kind of chaos,” Johnson said in response to Wray’s comments.
He added that until recently, most Democrats ignored what Biden was allowing to happen until some of their leading figures, such as New York City Mayor Eric Adams, began warning that illegal migrants were overwhelming their resources.
“We’re going to force the issue, and I think the American people want us to do that,” Johnson told Kudlow.
The Louisiana Republican shared a clip of the interview on social media while he hyped legislation to finish the border wall begun under Trump, end the “catch and release” policy, and reinstate the former president’s “remain in Mexico” policy, among other reforms.
“The border crisis is a direct result of failed policy decisions by the Biden Admin — not a lack of funding,” Johnson wrote.
The border crisis is a direct result of failed policy decisions by the Biden Admin – not a lack of funding.
HR 2 would:
-Finish the wall
-End catch and release
-End abuse of parole authority
-Reform the broken asylum system
-Restart Remain in Mexico pic.twitter.com/8XZdqJih5x
— Speaker Mike Johnson (@SpeakerJohnson) November 3, 2023
The measure, titled the Secure the Border Act of 2023, was passed by the House in May on a 219-213 vote. Johnson called the bill “the most comprehensive border security legislation in decades” on Tuesday and urged the Senate to “take it up immediately.”
The number of migrants who illegally crossed into the United States during the month of September hit a new record, according to figures released by Customs and Border Protection, leading to new criticisms of President Joe Biden after he pledged to begin beefing up security and building a new section of wall.
“There were 269,735 migrant encounters in September, of which 218,763 were encountered entering illegally by Border Patrol agents. That brings the yearly total for migrants at the southern border for FY 23 to 2.48 million, higher than the 2.38 million in FY 22 and 1.73 million in FY 21. There were just 458,088 encounters in FY 2020,” Fox News reported, citing the CBP data.
“Of those who entered, 43,000 individuals were processed in through ports of entry via the controversial CBP One app, which allows migrants to schedule an appointment to be paroled into the U.S.,” the outlet continued. “Meanwhile, there were 18 encounters of people on the terror watch list between ports of entry at the southern border, taking the total for FY 23 up to 169 — a new record and more than the last six fiscal years combined.”