With his border crisis, Biden is putting illegals ahead of Americans – including our veterans

Published 9:20 am Friday, May 24, 2024

With his border crisis, Biden is putting illegals ahead of Americans – including our veterans. Last week marked one year since House Republicans passed H.R. 2, a comprehensive border security bill that would end President Biden’s disastrous catch-and-release policy, restart border wall construction, and increase the number of agents at our southern border.

These provisions would do so much to bring an end to the president’s border crisis. But instead of supporting this legislation, President Biden has left our border wide open. In fact, in the year since H.R. 2’s passage in the House, more than 2 million illegal aliens have crossed our southern border.

Among them are hundreds of thousands of known “gotaways,” illegal aliens who have entered our country while evading apprehension by border agents. Under President Biden, the number of migrants in this group has exploded, up from 136,808 in fiscal year 2020—the last full year of the Trump administration — to 670,674 in fiscal year 2023. So far this fiscal year, which started in October, 175,000 known gotaways have entered our country — an average of almost 800 per day.

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Make no mistake: This border crisis is a major security threat — representing just one way the President is putting the interests of illegal aliens ahead of American citizens. Since President Biden’s inauguration, more than 300 individuals on the terror watchlist — that we know of — have illegally entered our country, including 80 in fiscal year 2024. At the same time, we’ve seen a dramatic increase in the number of illegals from countries that are foreign adversaries, including Communist China. So far this fiscal year, border agents apprehended 27,583 Chinese nationals — a staggering 8,000 percent increase from all of fiscal year 2021. Among them, 85 percent are single adults.

On top of its security threats, Biden’s border crisis is putting tremendous pressure on our local communities and resources. To take one example: because public schools are legally required to enroll minors regardless of immigration status, many districts are struggling to accommodate the influx of migrant children. In two Texas high schools, for example, teachers were forced to teach students in hallways after 400 migrant children enrolled at the school. And across Tennessee, I have heard from countless communities that are struggling to find ESL teachers for migrant children amid a nationwide shortage of bilingual instructors.

Instead of changing course from his open border agenda, however, President Biden is doubling down, even lavishing taxpayer-funded benefits on illegal aliens, including housing and health care. The Department of Veterans Affairs (VA), for example, is reportedly doling out tens of millions of dollars to help health facilities treat migrants. At the same time, nearly 1 million U.S. veterans are awaiting adjudication on their benefits claims.

The Biden administration, meanwhile, has funneled hundreds of millions of dollars to programs that provide housing for illegal aliens — while more than 35,000 veterans remain homeless in the United States.

One thing should be clear: In Joe Biden’s America, illegal aliens are prioritized over our brave veterans. And Tennesseans and most Americans know that this is inexcusable.

That’s why, in the U.S. Senate, I have introduced two crucial pieces of legislation to bring this mistreatment to an end. The No VA Resources for Illegal Aliens Act, which I introduced alongside Senator Tuberville (R-Ala.), would prohibit the VA from providing health care or engaging in claims processing for anyone unlawfully present in our country. And the Heroes Over Aliens Act, which I introduced alongside Senator Kennedy (R-La.), would block the Biden administration from using federal dollars to house illegal aliens in the United States when veterans remain homeless.

Under no circumstances should illegal immigrants receive taxpayer dollars intended to support our nation’s veterans, who deserve nothing less than the very best care we have to offer. The No VA Resources for Illegal Aliens Act and the Heroes Over Aliens Act would help ensure that happens.

(Marsha Blackburn represents Tennessee in the U.S. Senate.)