While illegal immigration has quickly become one of the most debated political issues of our time, it can be easy to lose sight of the real human element of the border crisis.
There are the ranchers and other residents of border communities whose property and lives are at risk with the influx of illegal migrants who flood across the border in crippling numbers, herded by dangerous, criminal cartels that exploit desperate Central Americans for monetary gain.
There are the migrants themselves, particularly the children are reportedly sometimes “recycled” by smugglers to accompany adults who claim to be their family members so they’ll be more likely to be released by border officials, or the women and girls who are sexually abused and assaulted as they make the trek across our border.
Then, of course, there are the men and women who are tasked with enforcing the law in a situation that has grown increasingly lawless, thanks to the reckless policies of virtue-signaling politicians who care about talking points exponentially more than they care about the lives of those endangered by their policies.
In the Joe Biden presidency, it’s easy to imagine that frustration running high, to say the least, with the out-of-touch D.C. elitists who have turned our border into a crippling and deadly humanitarian and national security crisis.
Well, according to a report about a meeting Wednesday between Biden administration secretary of homeland security, Alejandro Mayorkas, and members of the U.S. Border Patrol responsible for the Yuma, Arizona, Sector, tensions ran so high that an agent ended up turning his back on the cabinet official.
Of course, the way the agent reportedly put it, it was Mayorkas who turned his back on the men and women of border enforcement, first, and I’d be willing to bet you’d find this to be rather apt.
Townhall’s Julio Rosas reported that, according to an audio recording of the obtained by the outlet, Mayorkas acknowledged when speaking to agents that the border situation has not been going well.
“The job has not gotten any easier over the last few months and it was very, very difficult throughout 2021. I know apprehending families and kids is not what you signed up to do. And now we got a composition that is changing even more with Cubans, Venezuelans, Nicaraguans, and the like, it just gets more difficult,” Mayorkas said in the recording, Rosas reported.
“I know the policies of this administration are not particularly popular with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, but that’s the reality and let’s see what we can do within that framework.”
When pressed by agents on how the administration can reconcile the fact that the Border Patrol’s main mission is to, well, patrol the border, with administration policies that are preventing them from doing so, Mayorkas replied that he liked their “candor.”
He gave what sounds like a mealy-mouthed promise that he is working to ensure agents have the resources to do their job, which an agent reportedly told him is exactly what Border Patrol has been told for “years.”
That was when, Rosas wrote: “According to sources present at the meeting and the audio recording, the agent who asked the question then turned his back on Mayorkas.”
“Let me just say, you can turn your back on me but I won’t turn my back on you,” Mayorkas said, according to Rosas.
“The agent replied Mayorkas turned his back on the agents first,” Rosas wrote.
During the rest of the meeting, it sounds like Mayorkas was tasked with answering quite a few additional challenges to the job he and his department have been doing, such as how politicians have demonized agents, a likely reference to a false claim that agents were seen “whipping” Haitian migrants, or why so few migrants are being enrolled in the so-called “Remain in Mexico” policy which the Biden admin was forced by a court order to reinstate last year.
“The numbers are not where they need to be. I agree with that,” Mayorkas admitted.
One agent appears to have really turned up the heat by noting that things in the Yuma Sector were far better during the administration of former President Donald Trump, who made border security a priority.
Sources told Townhall’s Rosas that Mayorkas was visibly upset, as was Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz, who reportedly thought the agents were simply griping rather than proposing solutions to Mayorkas.
Because it kind of seems like listening to the vexation of these slandered, overworked, hamstrung, and handcuffed border patrol agents is exactly what Mayorkas needed to hear.
And bringing up the situation under the Trump presidency seems like it’s proposing a solution — just not the kind of solution Biden Democrats want to hear.
Trump’s signature policy was the aggressive stance he took on securing the border — and so Biden deliberately and emphatically tried to do the opposite.
Look what that’s gotten us.
I doubt voters are going to overlook the glaring contrast in 2022, or in 2024 for that matter. Let’s hope they don’t — because again, the border situation is not simply some political talking point. It’s a matter of life and death and the rule of law.
And no one knows that better than the border agents.