“It’s a sad state of affairs in our politics,” acting Department of Homeland Security Secretary Kevin McAleenan declared.
A Democratic congresswoman blamed the deaths of multiple immigrant children at the U.S.-Mexico border on law enforcement officials at the border, taking it to the extreme by accusing them of “intentional” deaths.
Rep. Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.) said at this week’s hearing with McAleenan that the “evidence” from border deaths of children is “really clear that this is intentional, it’s a policy choice being made on purpose by this administration and it’s cruel and inhumane,” as IJR Red noted.
At the time, McAleenan slammed her remark as “appalling,” and other congress members agreed as they voted to “taken down” her comment.
In case you missed it, see her comments below:
WATCH: After a dispute over comments by Rep. Underwood about the Trump admin. and the deaths of migrant children at the southern border, Republicans voted to have her comments removed from the record. https://t.co/oOLDQ65elM pic.twitter.com/R5DjGUaH6Q
— NBC News (@NBCNews) May 22, 2019
Doubling down against those accusations, the acting DHS secretary told Fox News late Thursday: “We’ve got an actual crisis. We’ve got solutions on the table. We’ve got clarity on what our men and women on the border need with the support from Congress, and yet that’s the kind of thing we’re hearing.”
When asked what he believes is the most crucial thing that needs to be fixed at the border, McAleenan said changing the law regarding family units so that they could hold migrants in custody longer is most important.
The current detention period is 20 days for immigrant children and families — Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) recently proposed to change the period to 100 days, garnering the support of Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-Texas), who told IJR that holding people in custody so that their claims are adjudicated fairly will “reverse this incentive” and “really regain operational control of our border.”
McAleenan noted 40% of border officials are taking on roles such as care, custody, transportation, and hospital watch for unaccompanied children, rather than securing the border.
Watch the video below:
In late March, McAleenan declared a “breaking point has arrived” at the southern border as they reached the highest number of immigrant apprehensions in a single day. Border officials then saw numbers continue to grow, as there were 103,719 total apprehensions in March and 109,144 in April.