Biggs, Border Security Caucus Send Letter To Biden Opposing Magnus, Other DHS Nominees

Tucson Police Chief Chris Magnus [Photo via Tucson Police Department]

On Thursday, Congressmen Andy Biggs  and Brian Babin as Co-Chairs of the Congressional Border Security Caucus, along with 29 of their colleagues sent a letter to Senator Chuck Schumer and Senator Mitch McConnell urging the Senate to reject President Biden’s nominees to lead U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

The group questioned how Chief  Chris Magnus, of the Tucson Police Department is being considered to head up CBP when he “publicly defended sanctuary jurisdiction policies that encourage illegal immigration,” making it more difficult for DHS to enforce immigration law, and endangering federal law enforcement officers.

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“The policies that these nominees promoted in their previous positions clearly demonstrate the nominees will be unwilling to make the decisions necessary to enforce the law and end the current border crisis,” wrote the group. “Confirming these nominees would endorse the policies that created the crisis.  We respectfully request that you reject these nominees in favor of individuals dedicated to protecting our national security, sovereignty, and well-being.”

“In less than five months, the Biden Administration has created the worst border crisis in our history,” said Biggs.  USCIS, CBP, and ICE need leaders who will put America first and enforce the law. The Senate should reject these anti-border security nominees and force President Biden to nominate individuals who are committed to protecting our national security, securing the border, and ending the crisis.  The Trump administration proved that it is possible to implement policies to secure our border; the Biden administration must reinstate the policies that were working instead of appeasing open-borders activists.”

“The nominees selected to lead USCIS, CBP, and ICE show just how cavalier President Biden is about ending his ongoing crisis on the southern border,” said Babin. “Each of these candidates has a history of making dangerous policy decisions, ignoring immigration law, and perpetuating the open borders narrative. These agencies are vital to the safety and security of our country, and we deserve for them to be led by people who will honor that responsibility.”

Full letter:

June 3, 2021

The Honorable Chuck Schumer
Majority Leader
322 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510

The Honorable Mitch McConnell
Minority Leader
317 Russell Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510

Dear Leader Schumer and Leader McConnell:

We urge you to reject President Biden’s nominees to lead U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Since taking office, President Joe Biden has unleashed the worst border crisis in two decades.  He inherited a border that was more secure than it was four years ago and a set of policies that were effective in preventing illegal immigration. Yet President Biden repealed or modified those policies and created a border crisis. President Biden’s nominees either helped develop the policies that have produced the crisis or have shown an unwillingness to enforce immigration law. They will not enact the changes necessary to end the crisis.

In April, over 178,000 illegal aliens were encountered at the border, representing a 944 percent increase from the prior year.  April was not an anomaly; in March, more than 173,000 were encountered, in February more than 101,000 were encountered.  The inhumane border crisis that the Biden administration’s policies created is growing.

The administration has reinstated catch and release policies.  It is spending hundreds of millions of U.S. taxpayer dollars to transport and house illegal aliens in the interior of the United States.  In many cases, aliens are released without a Notice to Appear. Pretending that illegal aliens will report to ICE offices to be placed into removal proceedings is sheer folly.

The crisis is happening because of a methodical undoing of successful border security and immigration policies. The Biden administration stopped construction of the border wall, ended the successful Migrant Protection Protocols, attempted to halt all deportations, promised the largest amnesty in American history, and declared the United States a sanctuary country by limiting enforcement of our immigration laws.

You are now being asked to consider the nominations of key personnel at the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).  President Biden has nominated Ur Jaddou to serve as the Director of USCIS, Chris Magnus to serve as Commissioner of CBP, and Ed Gonzalez to serve as an Assistant Secretary of Homeland Security (Director of ICE).  All three of these nominations should be rejected.

Ur Jaddou led the Biden-Harris transition team’s review of DHS.  In this role she developed the policies that created the current crisis at the southern border.  Chris Magnus publicly defended sanctuary jurisdiction policies that encourage illegal immigration, make it more difficult for DHS to enforce immigration law, and endanger federal law enforcement officers.

While serving as Sheriff of Harris County, Texas, Ed Gonzalez terminated a formal cooperation agreement with ICE, the agency he is now nominated to lead.  He prohibited his deputies from participating in immigration enforcement actions with federal partners including ICE.

The policies that these nominees promoted in their previous positions clearly demonstrate the nominees will be unwilling to make the decisions necessary to enforce the law and end the current border crisis. Confirming these nominees would endorse the policies that created the crisis.  We respectfully request that you reject these nominees in favor of individuals dedicated to protecting our national security, sovereignty, and well-being.

Sincerely,
Andy Biggs
Member of Congress
Co-Chair, Border Security Caucus

Brian Babin, D.D.S.
Member of Congress
Co-Chair, Border Security Caucus