President Trump is showing day after day that he’s not taking any chances on the Border.
It’s a crisis and he’s taking every action available to him.
Today that means ordering a surge in personnel to fortify the border.
Take a look:
CNN had more:
Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen on Monday directed Customs and Border Protection to speed up its planned surge of 750 officers to assist the US Border Patrol along areas of the southern border where there has been a influx of migrants crossing into the US from Mexico.
She also told the border agency, which is overseen by DHS, to look at adding possibly more than 2,000 officers to the border areas.
Last week, CBP Commissioner Kevin McAleenan said he was moving 750 officers from "key roles" at the ports of entry to help Border Patrol care for migrants, including helping with processing and transportation, adding that the shift would cause a slowdown in trade and an increased wait for cars and pedestrians crossing legally.
The administration has not provided additional details of where the personnel would be moved from or where they would be deployed.
CBP expected March to be the highest month for encounters at the southern border in a decade, according to McAleenan. The final monthly numbers have not yet been released.
Nielsen also directed the immediate expansion of the administration's policy of returning asylum seekers to Mexico for the duration of their immigration proceedings, calling for "hundreds of additional migrants" to be returned to Mexico each day.
So far, this policy is in effect in California and parts of Texas, but Nielsen said her department would look to expand the locations for returns as well.
"The crisis at our border is worsening, and DHS will do everything in its power to end it," said Nielsen in a statement.
The return policy, known as the Migrant Protection Protocols program, is being challenged in court by a group of migrants that were sent back to Mexico to await their court dates.
And from PBS:
As many as 2,000 U.S. inspectors who screen cargo and vehicles at ports of entry along the Mexican border may be reassigned to help handle the surge of Central American families coming across, the Trump administration said Monday.
The temporary reassignments, up from the current 750 inspectors, threaten to slow the movement of trucks bringing TVs, medical devices and other goods into the U.S. and cause delays for cross-border commuters who come for work or school.
The inspectors are instead being put to work processing migrants, taking their applications for asylum and transporting them to holding centers.“Closing the border would cause an immediate depression in border state communities and, depending on the duration, a recession in the rest of the country.”
– Laredo Mayor Pete Saenz, chairman of the Texas Border Coalition
Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen said the reassignments are necessary to help manage a huge influx of migrants that is straining the system and overflowing border facilities.
“The crisis at our border is worsening, and DHS will do everything in its power to end it,” Nielsen said.
The effects of pulling inspectors from ports of entry were on display in El Paso, where thousands of border crossers lined up Monday, waiting about an hour to cross into the U.S. They included vendors, U.S. citizens and students with visas.
Sergio Amaya, 24, a student at the University of Texas-El Paso, is an American citizen who lives in Juarez. He said it normally takes him two minutes to cross the bridge.
“The Border Patrol agent said it’s going to get worse,” Amaya said.
Meanwhile, business owners and elected officials warned of the economic consequences if President Donald Trump makes good on his threat last week to shut down all ports of entry along the southern border to stem the wave of asylum seekers.
The United States and Mexico trade about $1.7 billion in goods daily, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, which said closing the border would be “an unmitigated economic debacle” that would threaten 5 million American jobs.
Here's the official DHS press release:
Today, Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen M. Nielsen issued a memorandum to U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Commissioner Kevin McAleenan outlining new steps the agency must take to combat the growing security and humanitarian crisis at the southern border.
“The crisis at our border is worsening, and DHS will do everything in its power to end it,” said Secretary Nielsen. “We will not stand idly by while Congress fails to act yet again, so all options are on the table. We will immediately redeploy hundreds of CBP personnel to the border to respond to this emergency. We will urgently pursue additional reinforcements from within DHS and the interagency. And we will require those seeking to enter the United States to wait in Mexico until an immigration court as reviewed their claims.”
The Secretary ordered Commissioner McAleenan to undertake emergency surge operations and immediately increase its temporary reassignment of personnel and resources from across the agency to address the influx of migrants. According to the directive, the CBP Office of Field Operations shall accelerate its planned reallocation of up to 750 officers to Border Patrol Sectors that are affected by the emergency. Moreover, CBP is directed to explore raising that target, is authorized to exceed it, and shall notify the Secretary if reassignments are planned to exceed 2,000 personnel.
Secretary Nielsen further directed CBP to immediately expand the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP), a DHS initiative to return aliens to Mexico to wait during the pendency of their U.S. immigration proceedings. The Secretary directed CBP to return hundreds of additional migrants per day above current rates to Mexico, consistent with U.S. law and humanitarian obligations. This increase in returns shall include individuals apprehended or encountered at or between POEs. Moreover, the agency is directed to plan for an expansion of MPP beyond the locations in which it currently operates in California and Texas.
Please limit one per person! 💥
Please limit one per person.