Ivey among 26 Republican governors seeking White House meeting on border
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - More than half the nation’s governors have signed on to a letter asking President Joe Biden for a meeting regarding what they consider to be a “national security crisis” at the southern border “created by eight months of unenforced borders.”
Alabama Gov. Kay Ivey is among the 26 GOP state leaders seeking a meeting with Biden, which the letter requested happen at the White House within 15 days. No Democratic governors have signed the letter.
“There is a crisis at the southern border, plain and simple,” Ivey said in a statement released with a copy of the letter. “My fellow governors and I have sent state resources, yet we have seen no action from the Biden-Harris Administration. National security is critical, and make no mistake, eight months of unenforced borders places us all at risk. It is past time we address the border crisis.”
The letter comes as the Biden administration has begun the process of mass expulsion of thousands of Haitian migrants from Texas in what the Associated Press says could be one of America’s swiftest, large-scale expulsions of migrants or refugees in decades.
The Republican governors who joined in requesting the meeting include those from the states of: Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, West Virginia and Wyoming.
The letter, dated Sept. 20, 2021, reads in its entirety:
Dear Mr. President,
As chief executives of our states, we request a meeting with you at The White House to bring an end to the national security crisis created by eight months of unenforced borders. The months-long surge in illegal crossings has instigated an international humanitarian crisis, spurred a spike in international criminal activity, and opened the floodgates to human traffickers and drug smugglers endangering public health and safety in our states. A crisis that began at our southern border now extends beyond to every state and requires immediate action before the situation worsens.
The negative impacts of an unenforced border policy on the American people can no longer be ignored. Border apprehensions are up almost 500% compared to last year, totaling more than 1.3 million—more people than the populations of nine U.S. states. Approximately 9,700 illegal apprehensions have prior criminal convictions. Cartels and traffickers are making $14 million a day moving people illegally across the border. More fentanyl has been seized this fiscal year than the last three years combined—almost 10,500 pounds of fentanyl when only 2 milligrams prove fatal. This is enough to kill seven times the U.S. population.
Despite the lack of federal action to reverse the crisis, many states have stepped up and committed unprecedented resources to support the security of our national border. We have heard directly from our constituents about the damage this crisis has caused in our states, and it is our duty as elected officials to act swiftly to protect our communities, as it is yours.
While governors are doing what we can, our Constitution requires that the President must faithfully execute the immigration laws passed by Congress. Not only has the federal government created a crisis, it has left our states to deal with challenges that only the federal government has a duty to solve. Our immigration system may be complicated and complex, but the solution to ending the border crisis is simple and straightforward. As President, you have the ability to take action to protect America, restore security, and end the crisis now.
Therefore, we come directly to you seeking an open and constructive dialogue regarding border enforcement on behalf of U.S. citizens in our states and all those hoping to become U.S. citizens. We must end the current crisis and return to border operations that respect the laws of our land and the lives of all people, including those in our states looking to the federal government to enforce and protect our nation’s borders.
Due to the emergent crisis, we respectfully request a meeting as soon as your schedule allows within 15 days. While we know your responsibilities as Commander in Chief are substantial, ending the national crisis and securing our states must be a priority.
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