Republican Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst released a video in response to White House press secretary Jen Psaki’s statement that Republicans haven’t proposed solutions to the U.S. immigration crisis.
“There are a lot of Republicans out there giving speeches about how outraged they are about the situation at the border, not many who are putting forward solutions or steps that we could take,” Psaki said during her Sept. 24 press conference. “We’re a little tired of the speeches.”
As vice chairwoman of the Senate Republican Conference, Ernst is responsible for party messaging. The video includes Republicans, such as Texas Sens. John Cornyn and Ted Cruz, Utah Sen. Mike Lee, Ohio Sen. Rob Portman and Ernst, noting legislation that they’ve introduced and policies instituted by former President Donald Trump that decrease illegal immigration.
Cornyn and Democratic Arizona Sen. Kyrsten Sinema introduced a bill that would establish new migrant shelters to decrease overcrowding and speed up the adjudication of asylum claims. It has remained stuck in the Judiciary Committee since April.
Republicans have also introduced universal e-verify requirements across multiple bills in 2021 to cut down on the employment of illegal immigrants. Portman introduced a standalone e-verify bill in February, and Arkansas Sen. Tom Cotton and Utah Sen. Mitt Romney tied e-verify requirements to a minimum wage hike. Neither bill passed out of the Judiciary Committee.
Cruz’s bill, the SHIELD Act, would require the Biden administration to continue Title 42 public health expulsions due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has repeatedly extended the measure, although some Democrats have called on Biden to end it. (RELATED: Schumer Calls On Biden Admin To End Title 42 Deportation Flights)
Customs and Border Protection agents encountered a record 213,500 illegal immigrants in July and more than 209,000 in August. Over 93,000 illegal immigrants were expelled under Title 42 in August.