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Press Release Published: Apr 16, 2024

Hearing Wrap Up: Removal of Criminal Illegal Aliens Intentionally Harder Under Biden Administration

WASHINGTON—The Subcommittee on National Security, the Border, and Foreign Affairs held a hearing titled, “How the Border Crisis Impacts Public Safety.” Members discussed how the Biden Administration’s border policies have led to many criminal illegal aliens not being deported and allowed to roam and harm U.S. communities across the nation. Members also discussed how these crimes are preventable through rigorous enforcement of U.S. immigration law.

Key Takeaways:

The Biden Administration’s policy changes have protected criminal illegal aliens to the detriment of the safety and security of American citizens and legal residents.

  • Bill Waybourn—Sheriff for Tarrant County, Texas—spoke on the changes he’s seen due to the policy changes by the Biden Administration: “The impact of the open border since 2021 has had numerous effects on our county. We have seen health issues, including mental health, increase rapidly due to 1000% plus increase of available drugs entering across the border. While the economic impact is one thing, the toll on human lives is another, one of which cannot be calculated…we see 264 people with detainers, with over 170 violent crimes. These crimes include murder, sex assault of children, victimization of the elderly, and the list goes on. These offenders, which many are gang members and outlaws, have left nothing untouched.”

The Biden Administration is hindering the ability of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to deliver consequences to illegal aliens unlawfully residing in the interior of United States, including illegal aliens who have engaged in further criminal activity.

  • Ken Cuccinelli— Senior Fellow for Immigration and Homeland Security at the Center for Renewing America—slammed the Biden Administration for allowing dangerous individuals to remain in the country and harm U.S. citizens: “None of these individuals should be in the United States in the first place. Every citizen victimized by an illegal immigrant is a victim that could and should have been prevented with common sense border and immigration policies. Carried out by elected officials who possess the absolute bare minimum of compassion for those whom they represent. Arguments over citizens versus non-citizen crime rates are ‘ivory tower’ intellectual exercises that miss the fundamental point.”

The Biden Administration has failed to detain most illegal aliens during removal proceedings, releasing over three-fourths of illegal aliens encountered by Border Patrol in December 2023 alone, not counting gotaways.

  • Mike Chapman—Sheriff for Loudoun County, Virginia—discussed the active elements at play in Biden’s border crisis and how it has led us to this moment: “The porous border, lax enforcement policies, the refusal to return illegal migrants to their countries, the discouragement by this Administration for local authorities to turn over illegal migrants to ICE, and its overall lack of support to law enforcement in general has been a catalyst for increasing violent crime nationwide.”

Member Highlights:

Subcommittee on National Security, the Border, and Foreign Affairs Chairman Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-Wis.) examined how the Biden Administration is intentionally making the removal of criminal illegal aliens more difficult.

Rep. Grothman: “Did the Biden Administration actually make it more difficult for immigration officers to remove criminal illegal aliens?”

Hon. Cuccinelli: “Absolutely and intentionally and the way to think of those early memos, like the first one there early in 2021, is that they were attempting to tie their own shoelaces together. They literally took steps at ICE and CBP to make it harder for them to achieve their mission structurally.”

Rep. Grothman: “Is a criminal alien more or less likely to be removed under the Biden Administration compared to the previous Administration?”

Hon. Cuccinelli: “Far less likely and many of them don’t even get to ICE because of the catch-and-release swamping of CBP.”

Rep. Nancy Mace (R-S.C.) discussed how the Biden Administration is waiting for criminal illegal aliens to commit violent crimes against American citizens before they are being deported, and, in some cases still not being deported.

Rep. Mace: “I found it staggering that in 2021, Secretary Mayorkas wrote ‘the fact that an individual is a removable non-citizen will not alone be the basis of an enforcement action against them’. Why is Joe Biden waiting until these illegals commit serious crimes before deporting them, if they deport them at all?”

Hon. Cuccinelli: “I was going to say, in fact they are not deporting them even when they do commit serious crimes and I can only conclude that they want the border invasion that they have open the borders for their own reasons.”

Rep. Mace: “Can you speak to the policies put in place by Joe Biden’s Department of Homeland Security that have disempowered ICE, allowing criminal aliens to roam free terrorizing American citizens?”

Hon. Cuccinelli: “Early in the Biden tenure, in early 2021 both with ICE and CBP…the Administration through Secretary Mayorkas intentionally made it difficult for both CBP and ICE to accomplish their missions. It’s part of, by the way, why morale in those two organization is as low as it has ever been. Because you sign up to do a job and then are actually impaired by your leadership from doing that job. And that’s reflected by the number of criminals that are coming into their custody when CBP is catching and releasing 85% of their apprehensions, ICE doesn’t even see most of these folks.”

Rep. Williams Timmons (R-S.C.) questioned the possible motives behind President Biden’s decision to keep in place destructive border policies that are harming Americans.

Rep. Timmons: “All this President has to do is sign his name. Undo the Executive Orders he did three and half years ago and solve this problem. I just want to ask the Sheriffs, why do you think this President is doing this? Why do you think this Administration is doing this?

Mr. Waybourn: “I’m afraid I don’t know why this is. I know Speaker Johnson spoke the other day that there are people in Congress who would like to be able to give them the ability to vote so I think it is maybe a political issue such as that.”

Mr. Chapman: “I would agree with Sheriff Waybourn, I can’t specifically say, but it appears that that is the reason.”

CLICK HERE to watch the hearing.