Publisher's Note: This post appears here courtesy of the The Daily Wire. The author of this post is Daniel Chaitin.
Ahead of the imminent expiration of the Title 42 policy credited with blocking millions of crossings, high-profile Republicans are speaking out against President Joe Biden and his administration for their handling of a growing southern border crisis.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) excoriated Biden and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas during a Senate speech, saying they "have proven they are either incapable, unwilling, or uninterested in defending and maintaining our borders."
Meanwhile, Texas Republican Governor Greg Abbott, whose state has the largest border buttressing Mexico, raised the alarm about how Biden's "open border policies"
have fueled problems such as the fentanyl drug trafficking and illegal immigration.
"Joe Biden has failed in his constitutional duty to protect our nation. Just over two years ago, the United States had the most secure border in decades. Biden abandoned our border on DAY ONE of his administration - leading to a RECORD increase in illegal crossings,"
Abbott said in a recent tweet.
Florida Republican Governor Ron DeSantis, who may soon enter the 2024 presidential contest, lashed out at Biden as he signed legislation on Wednesday to crack down on illegal immigration.
"The Biden Border Crisis has wreaked havoc across the United States and has put Americans in danger,"
DeSantis said in a statement. "In Florida, we will not stand idly by while the federal government abandons its lawful duties to protect our country."
Multiple cities and at least one state have declared emergencies as officials brace for a surge in asylum-seekers and longer processing periods when the pandemic-era Title 42, which allows authorities to quickly turn away migrants at the border on public health grounds, expires by the end of Thursday.
Large groups of people have been seen amassing at the southern border, and many are making a break for the United States between official ports of entry. Border agents are making up to 10,000 apprehensions daily this week, Customs and Border Protection sources told Fox News.
The Associated Press reported border agents have been told to start releasing migrants from stations that are overcrowded while instructing them to show up to an immigration office within 60 days or face deportation. Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody sued the Biden administration in an effort to ensure it complies with a court ruling from earlier this year and prevent the "mass release"
In a bid to get a handle on the situation, Mayorkas said smugglers have been "spreading false"
information that the border will be open after Title 42 expires. "It will not be. They are lying,"
he said on Wednesday. The secretary urged migrants stick to lawful pathways to entry and warned that anyone who enters the country illegally faces the prospect of stiffer punishments under Title 8, which can ban people from re-entry for several years.
Despite taking some precautions, including sending troops to assist authorities at the U.S.-Mexico border and moving to disqualify migrants from applying for asylum in the United States if they neglected to first apply for asylum in other countries they traveled through, Biden conceded this week that the border will be "chaotic for a while."
Democrats in Congress have pressed the president to consider other actions such as further loosening sanctions on communist Cuba and socialist Venezuela, arguing the suffering they cause are a driving force behind migration, or expanding legal pathways for migrants from certain Central American countries in a bid to boost local economies.
McConnell, in his floor speech on Thursday, said "some of our Democratic colleagues are feigning great angst and indignation over"
the end of Title 42.
"They claim to be outraged that President Biden doesn't have a better plan,"
McConnell said. "But every senator had a chance just last year to vote to keep funding Title 42 measures. Senate Republicans gave our Democratic colleagues that opportunity. And every single Democrat voted in lock-step against it."
Meanwhile, the GOP-led House passed a bill on Thursday that focuses on border security and immigration, including imposing limits to asylum eligibility and resuming construction of a wall. "While the do-nothing Democrats ignore the country's crisis, Republicans are fighting for YOU,"
tweeted House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA).
Former President Donald Trump warned during a 2024 campaign CNN town hall that Thursday "is going to be a day of infamy."
If re-elected president, Trump pledged in a statement that on day one of his new administration he would "end this travesty and restore the sovereign borders of the United States of America"
and "immediately resume expedited removals of people [who] are crossing illegally, our border."