It’s Past Time to Secure the Border
For years, elected officials in Washington from both sides of the aisle have discussed the need for border security and then failed to actually deliver on that promise. Now that there is an effort to properly secure the border, some in Washington refuse to acknowledge a problem even exists. The fact remains that our country is facing a humanitarian and national security crisis along our southern border. Our nation’s immigration system is broken and is in desperate need of the crucial resources necessary to protect our communities.
Each day, the brave men and women that serve as our first line of defense are challenged by thousands of inadmissible migrants who arrive at our border. In the last two years alone, Immigration and Customs Enforcement has arrested 266,000 undocumented immigrants with criminal records. Immigration courts are facing a backlog of over 800,000 open cases. To make matters worse, drugs are flowing across our borders, contributing to our nation’s drug epidemic and taking far too many American lives. Each week, 300 Americans die from heroin overdoses, 90 percent of which comes across our southern border by legal and illegal points of entry.
Recognizing the crisis at hand, President Trump has asked for funds to address the enormous challenges we face. We cannot keep our communities and our country safe without adequate funding for border security. It means improving existing facilities by deploying new technology, adding additional law enforcement and judicial personnel, and implementing new security measures along our border. This also means properly providing funds for physical barriers where Customs and Border Patrol say they will be effective. If we can successfully land rovers on Mars, we can equip our ports of entry and areas along the border with technology to stem the flow of heroin, fentanyl, and other dangerous drugs that have hurt families in West Michigan and across the nation.