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Granger Remarks at Homeland Security FY23 Budget Hearing

I want to thank the chairwoman for holding this important hearing on the Department of Homeland Security’s fiscal year 2023 budget. 

Thank you also, Secretary Mayorkas for joining us. We look forward to your testimony today.

First, I want to honor Texas National Guardsman Bishop Evans.

Specialist Evans lost his life over the weekend saving two migrants from drowning.

Our deepest condolences go out to the family and friends of Specialist Evans, as well as the Texas National Guard.

Illegal crossings, like the one Specialist Evans encountered, have skyrocketed under this administration.

A record number of migrants attempted to cross the border illegally last year, and we are on track for another record-breaking year. 

On average, our Border Patrol Agents encounter seven thousand individuals every day. This is straining the capabilities of our processing and detention facilities.

Our agents and officers on the ground do not have the resources to handle numbers this high.

The situation will only get worse if the administration is successful in lifting the Title 42 public health authority that has been successfully used to deny entry to illegal migrants during the pandemic.

Current projections from the department suggest that without Title 42 authority, the number of migrant encounters could more than double.

Tens of thousands of migrants are waiting to cross the border if this authority is lifted.

It has been reported that some ICE and CBP accounts could run out of funds as soon as July if President Biden is successful in revoking Title 42.

Members on both sides of the aisle agree that now is not the time to stop enforcement of this policy.

Thankfully, the administration’s plans to suspend this authority have been blocked for now by a federal judge.

This administration needs to stop their failed policies and start securing our border. The current policies have allowed:

  • Cartels and human traffickers to take advantage of gaps in the wall;
  • Drug trafficking to surge with Fentanyl seizures increasing 134%;
  • The number of deportations to fall by 68%; 
  • Hundreds of thousands of migrants to be released into the United States.

We need common-sense solutions that deter illegal immigration, not policies that encourage more of it.

Our message must be consistent and clear: the border is not open, and if you try to cross illegally, you will be quickly sent home.

I urge the administration to return to the rule of law and get serious about addressing the crisis at our border.

Mr. Secretary, I want to extend my sincere appreciation to the men and women of the Department of Homeland Security who dedicate their lives to protect this great nation. 

Thank you, Madam Chair, I yield back.

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