Senator Jeff Sessions

News Releases

WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Jeff Sessions (R-AL), a senior member of the Senate Judiciary Committee, issued the following statement today about the deteriorating situation on the U.S. border:

“The rising crisis at the border is the direct and predictable result of actions taken by President Obama. He and his Administration have announced to the world that they will not enforce America’s immigration laws, and have emphasized in particular that foreign youth will be exempted from these laws. The world has heard the President’s call, and illegal immigrants are pouring across the border in pursuit of his promised amnesty. President Obama is responsible for this calamity, and only by declaring to the world that our border is no longer open—and that the law will be restored—can this emergency be stopped.

This is critically necessary for humanitarian reasons: it is simply wrong for the President to continue incentivizing youth and their families to undertake these perilous treks. Nor can the U.S. afford the costs associated with ‘resettling’ these arrivals, estimated by the White House to reach nearly $2.3 billion next year alone. Adding to the incentive, politicians in both parties have promised citizenship for anyone in the world who arrives illegally in the country by a certain age. The first overriding goal must always be to reduce lawlessness, not incentivize it.

The New York Times similarly reported that the knowledge of non-enforcement in the U.S. is leading to the surge in illegality: ‘back home in Central America people have heard that those who make it to American soil have a good chance of staying.’ The Obama administration may as well hang a sign saying ‘open’ across the U.S. border. Only when the President publicly and firmly declares that illegal immigration will no longer be tolerated will the crisis he created come to an end.  Unfortunately, it appears the President remains more interested in encouraging lawlessness than preventing it.”

 

BACKGROUND:

Reuters reported that “[t]ens of thousands of children unaccompanied by parents or relatives are flooding across the southern U.S. border illegally and that “the flow is expected to grow.” They project an increase of more than two thousand percent—from 6,000 in 2011 to almost 130,000 in 2015. Politico writes that: “White House estimates show that the projected costs of caring for and resettling child migrants from Central America could reach $2.28 billion next year—well over double what the administration asked for in its 2015 budget just months ago.”

The New York Times reported:

“With detention facilities, asylum offices and immigration courts overwhelmed, enough migrants have been released temporarily in the United States that back home in Central America people have heard that those who make it to American soil have a good chance of staying. ‘Word has gotten out that we’re giving people permission and walking them out the door,’ said Chris Cabrera, a Border Patrol agent who is vice president of the local of the National Border Patrol Council, the agents’ union. ‘So they’re coming across in droves.’”