Vice President Mike Pence made his rounds on cable television on Sunday morning. One of the issues that repeatedly came up was crisis along our southern border.
CNN's Jake Tapper grilled Pence on the inhumane conditions detainees are facing, including lack of toothbrushes, blankets, showers and other basic necessities. Pence, however, said it is Democrats who have withheld funding to address the situation.
"That's why the president has continually called on Congress. He's said, 'let's give them another two weeks before we engage in the deportation effort,'" Pence explained, referencing President Trump's last minute decision to put a deportation sting on hold. "Let's reform our asylum laws and get additional humanitarian support so we can deal with the influx of illegals."
"Aren't toothbrushes and blankets and medicine basic conditions for kids? Aren't they a part of how the United States of America, the Trump administration, treats children?" Tapper asked.
"Well of course they are, Jake," Pence replied.
Tapper referenced a clip he played of a DOJ lawyer in court earlier this week saying the administration doesn't need to provide those basic necessities.
"Well the lawyer was arguing-" Tapper said.
"I can't speak to what that lawyer was saying," Pence replied. "It's one of the reasons we asked for more bed space-"
"Right," Tapper replied.
"-when we were negotiating with Congress during the government shutdown," Pence explained. "Democrats in Congress refused to expand the bed space and the capacity for us to detain people."
"But this is going on right now," Tapper said.
"That's one of the reasons we continue to call on Congress to give DHS, Customs and Border Protection additional resources at the border. But again-" Pence said.
"This is the wealthiest nation in the world. We have the money to give toothpaste and soap and blankets to these kids in this facility in El Paso County. Right now we do," Tapper said.
"Of course we do," Pence replied.
"So why don't we?" Tapper asked.
"My point is it's all about the appropriations process. Congress needs to provide additional support to deal with the crisis at our southern border. But we've got to get to the root causes," Pence explained. "We've got to close the loopholes that human traffickers, as we speak, are using to entice vulnerable families to take the long and dangerous journey north."
CNN’s Jake Tapper grills Vice President Pence on conditions at migrant detention centers, asking if children there should have toothbrushes, blankets and medicines. “Of course,” says Pence. https://t.co/TzFZ0GcUzp pic.twitter.com/uiw2kiU5Do— CNN (@CNN) June 23, 2019
CBS' Marg Brennan asked Pence why President Trump decided to announce the hold to the deportation sting that was schedule for Sunday.
"We have a crisis on our southern border. We are on track to have more than a million people come across our border and, for the first time ever, the vast majority are families that are bringing children with them to exploit what we understand our loopholes in our asylum laws. If people come across our border, make the claim of asylum, we can detain them for only 20 days and then they're released into the United States," Pence explained.
"The truth is 90 percent of those claims are denied and the vast majority never show up for their hearing a year or 18 months down the road. So the president is doing his job. We both took an oath to faithfully execute the laws of this country," Pence explained. "He set into motion an internal enforcement effort to remove people who have been given due process of law, who have been adjudicated, through a court order deported, but the president, talking with Speaker Pelosi, and other Democrats, made the decision to delay two weeks and to call on the Congress, once again, to close the loopholes that human traffickers are using to entice families."
.@VP Mike Pence tells @margbrennan the conditions in U.S. immigration facilities are not acceptable. “It is heartbreaking to see what you see,” he says, “If Democrats in Congress will simply step up...we can solve the crisis.” pic.twitter.com/QKGwXKAf8K— Face The Nation (@FaceTheNation) June 23, 2019
Border Patrol agents have backed up what the Trump administration is saying. People are no longer coming to our country to seek asylum. They know about catch-and-release so they walk across the border, find an agent and ask to see an immigration judge. They know they'll eventually be released into the United States. They're given a court date but have no incentive to show up for it. After all, they'd be facing deportation. Why show up when they can hide in plain sight?
Border Patrol and ICE resources are overwhelmed by the influx of illegal aliens. They need more money for basic necessities, like the toothbrushes, beds and medication Tapper referenced. They can't receive said money unless Congress passes legislation that allocates money to the agencies. The Trump administration's hands are literally tied. Democrats are upset by what they see yet they do nothing to combat the issue. They sit on their hands and want the Trump administration to fix things. Then, when President Trump declares a national emergency to get the funding Democrats won't give him, the Left is, once again, upset that they were circumvented.
You can't have it both ways, Democrats. Time to pick your poison.