Homeland Security Chief Announces Border Crisis Is 'Spiraling Out of Control' and Warns It Will Get Worse


Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen issued a grave assessment on Wednesday of the situation at the southern border, saying those seeking to enter the U.S. illegally has spiked dramatically and they are overwhelming the system.

“Illegal immigration is simply spiraling out of control and threatening public safety and national security,” Nielsen told the House Committee on Homeland Security.

She said the number of apprehensions has been rising recently, hitting 50,000 to 60,000 each month.

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“In February, we saw a 30 percent jump over the previous month, with agents apprehending or encountering nearly 75,000 aliens,” she said.

“This is an 80 percent increase over the same time last year. And I can report today that (Customs and Border Patrol) is forecasting the problem will get even worse this spring as the weather warms up.”

Nielsen added that CBP is now on track to apprehend more migrants crossing the border in the first six months of fiscal year 2019 than in the entirety of FY 2017.

“These increases will overwhelm the system entirely,” the secretary said. “This is not a manufactured crisis. This is truly an emergency.”

Do you believe the situation at the southern border is an emergency?

President Donald Trump urged Senate Republicans on Wednesday not to override his national emergency declaration regarding border security.

“Senate Republicans are not voting on constitutionality or precedent, they are voting on desperately needed Border Security & the Wall,” he tweeted. “Our Country is being invaded with Drugs, Human Traffickers, & Criminals of all shapes and sizes. That’s what this vote is all about. STAY UNITED!”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said on Monday he anticipates enough Republican senators will join with Democrats to pass a resolution seeking to block Trump’s emergency declaration, according to The Hill.

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“I think what is clear in the Senate is that there will be enough votes to pass the resolution of disapproval, which will then be vetoed by the president and then in all likelihood the veto will be upheld in the House,” McConnell told reporters in Kentucky.

Sens. Lisa Murkowski of Alaska, Susan Collins of Maine, Thom Tillis of North Carolina and Rand Paul of Kentucky have all said they will vote for a resolution of disapproval, clinching the 51 senators needed.

The resolution of disapproval passed the Democrat-controlled House last week.

Trump has the veto power, which would require a two-thirds vote in both chambers to override him.

In addition to the $1.375 billion Congress voted to authorize for barrier funding, the White House plans to redirect $3.6 billion from a military construction fund, $2.5 billion from a Department of Defense drug interdiction program and $600 million from the Treasury Department from a drug forfeiture fund.

The national emergency is specifically being used to tap the $3.6 billion from the military construction fund.

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 3,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Graduated dean's list from West Point
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith