The “staggering” number of illegal migrants crossing the US-Mexico border under President Biden is posing a “significant security issue” for the US, the head of the FBI warned Thursday.
The agency’s director Christopher Wray made the troubling remark during a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in response to questioning from Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas), who said citizens of most of the world’s countries are crossing the border.
“I certainly know that it is an eclectic mix of nationalities and the volume is just staggering,” Wray confessed.
Cornyn followed up, “And that’s a public security threat, you agree with me?”
“To me it represents a significant security issue and represents a wide array of criminal threats that flow out of it,” Wray confessed.
The number of Border Patrol busts in the 2022 fiscal year, which ends Sept. 30, has already surpassed 1.6 million, according to official figures.
The year’s total tally is now poised to soar past last year’s record of nearly 1.7 million encounters. The figures do not include the number of people able to evade authorities.
The astonishing number of Border Patrol busts also includes at least 50 illegal immigrants whose names appeared on federal terrorism watchlists between November and May, according to previous reporting.
Wray’s remark is likely to fuel even more criticism of Biden’s soft stance on the southern border from both sides of the aisle.
Democrat Rep. Henry Cuellar has previously blasted the President for listening to “activists” instead of locals on the crisis.
“The bottom line is I supported Joe Biden for president. He was the most centrist candidate running but the problem, in my opinion, is that he has surrounded himself, at least on the immigration issue, with people that have backgrounds in – I would call them immigration activists — and they’re giving their perspective and the problem is that’s only one perspective,” Cuellar seethed during an appearance on the Fox News podcast, “The Brian Kilmeade Show” in October.
“What about the perspective of the border communities?” the Texas congressman added.
Meanwhile, Republican-led states are continuing to battle the Biden administration over how to stem the flow of illegal migrants.
In a major upset for the GOP, the Supreme Court in June allowed Biden to end the Trump administration’s “Remain in Mexico” policy
There is also an ongoing court battle over the fate of Title 42, a COVID-19-era policy that allows border officials to swiftly deport most border-crossers in the name of public health.
A federal judge in Louisiana in May ordered the Biden administration to halt plans to lift the policy in June, which was anticipated to cause a renewed rush to the border. Still, the Biden administration has relaxed the use of Title 42.
Officials began to allow unaccompanied children who cross the border to remain in the US shortly after the president took office, which then soon extended to family units.
Recent footage of migrants released at the border shows single men also allowed to remain while awaiting court dates.
The surge has now forced the Biden administration to complete sections of former President Trump’s border wall in western Arizona — despite Biden’s prior vows not to do so.
Biden was vice president to former President Barack Obama — called the “Deporter in Chief” by immigration advocates — but campaigned on welcoming asylum seekers and called on Congress to legalize most illegal immigrants already in the US.