The U.S. border with Mexico is at a “breaking point,” Trump administration officials say, with arrests of illegal immigrants surging to record levels.
In February, border agents arrested more than 66,400 people for entering the country illegally, the highest number recorded since 2008.
“This situation is not sustainable,” Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Kevin McAleenan said in a press conference Monday. “The system is well beyond capacity and remains at the breaking point.”
Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen outlined the latest numbers in an appearance Wednesday before the House Homeland Security Committee, now controlled by Democrats.
“This is a crisis — pure and simple — and we need to respond accordingly,” Nielsen said in her prepared statement. “We cannot stand idly by as our border security is further compromised and our immigration laws are exploited.”
The Republican-controlled Senate Judiciary Committee also held a hearing Wednesday to examine border security.
The latest numbers come as President Donald Trump makes his case for his declaration of a national emergency to secure funding to build and add to barriers along the southern border.
McAleenan said the increased flow of illegal immigrants presents “both a border security and a humanitarian crisis.”
Since 2014, the number of families arriving illegally has increased dramatically. This poses a difficult challenge for Border Patrol officials, who have been clear they don’t have the infrastructure to respond to the influx of families—specifically children.
Read the full story from The Daily Signal
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