Picture this: The American immigration system through the eyes of a Democrat doubling down on claims of a manufactured crisis on our border.
In this world, illegal immigration does not impact the American economy. Women and children are not abused and neglected on the treacherous journey to the United States. Illegal aliens living undocumented in our society are not a threat to our safety. Lethal amounts of opioids are not illegally spilling over our border, killing American men, women, and children.
This is our current immigration system through Democrats’ rose-colored glasses — but unfortunately, it appears far from the truth.
In 2018, U.S. Customs and Border Protection encountered over 600,000 inadmissible aliens, over 400,000 of whom entered the country illegally. Those who enter the country illegally often claim asylum, thereby entitling themselves to a credible fear screening and a court date. This is where the notorious catch-and-release loophole is rooted.
The problem with catch-and-release loopholes that have often been backed by Democrats is that they entice illegal family migration and sex trafficking. Women and children often make the treacherous journey to the United States under the neglectful care of coyotes where one in three women will be sexually assaulted.
President Trump does not want to abandon those seeking refuge in the United States, he just wants them to do it legally. For that to happen, Congress needs to provide the funding and resources for our agencies to be able to enforce the letter of the law.
Each day that we do not enforce our immigration policies, we only empower the criminal behavior of coyotes and gang members who endanger the lives of women and children enduring inhumane conditions on their trek to the border.
Prior to the Trump administration’s crackdown on catch and release, family units or those claiming to be family units would be allowed into the U.S. while they waited out a court date for which many never showed. Loopholes like these have contributed to the uncounted millions of undocumented illegal aliens in the U.S.
Now, illegal aliens must wait out their proceedings in Mexico — a huge victory for American safety and sovereignty, and hopefully a deterrent for those endangering their lives on the journey to our Southern border.
Many criminals make their way into the United States each year. In 2018, 90 percent of the aliens arrested by ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations had criminal records. Thousands of Americans have died at the hands of illegal alien criminals. When will Democrats decide to recognize this loss of life, not as a statistic or talking point but as a call to action?
The opioid epidemic is another crisis, and our country is severely impacted by the flow of contraband drugs over our borders. To put this into perspective, opioid related deaths rose to record levels in 2017, passing the peak death tolls for car crashes, H.I.V., and gun related deaths. Among the significant seizures of heroin, cocaine and methamphetamine by Customs and Border Patrol, 332 pounds of fentanyl, deemed the deadliest drug in America by the CDC, were seized between October 2017 and July 2018. That’s enough fentanyl to kill over 73 million Americans.
Congress must work with President Trump to fix our broken immigration system for the safety and security of Americans everywhere. Five years ago under President Obama, all 54 Democrats in the Senate voted to double the length of a border fence with Mexico, spend $40 billion on border security, double the number of border agents, stop reunification visas, and create merit-based visas.
Democrats like Chuck Schumer and Nancy Pelosi should treat President Trump the same way they treated President Obama. Instead, they are politicking at the expense of the American people.
The crisis on our border is painfully real, not only for Americans, but for those who come here illegally and are exploited because we do not have the resources to deter them.
The government cannot reopen without an immigration solution or the loss of life will continue on both sides of the border.
When President Trump signed a continuing resolution last September, he warned it would be the last time he would do so without a fix for our border.
If Democrats are waiting for a call to action, this is it.
Cora Mandy is millennial adviser with America First Policies, a non-profit organization supporting key policy initiatives that will work for all citizens in our country and put America first.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.