Graham to visit border on heels of introducing immigration bill

WASHINGTON (WCSC) - U.S. Sen. Lindsey Graham said on Twitter he plans to head to the border Thursday.

He said in a post he “will be disappointed if U.S. government agencies don’t allow media to look at conditions regarding housing for migrant children.”

“This wasn’t tolerated by the media during [the] Trump Administration [and] shouldn’t be tolerated now,” he wrote.

Graham introduced legislation Wednesday he says is designed to “regain control” of the southern border.

He said his Secure and Protect Act of 2021 looks to reform what he calls “broken policies and stop abuse of our asylum laws.”

During a news conference Wednesday, Graham said the Biden Administration has lost control of the southern border.

“Most asylum seekers are not coming because of fear, but because of economic distress. The asylum standard has been completely abused,” Graham said. “It is being used by cartels and human traffickers, and they’re telling these poor folks all over Central America, ‘once you get to America, claim asylum. You’re entitled to hearing, they will release in the United States, then you can go anywhere you want to go.’ 90% of the people never show up for the hearing, and 90% of those who do show up are not allowed asylum. The asylum system is being gamed. The Secure and Protect Act will stop this.”

Graham said he is convinced the flow of people would “stop literally overnight” with the passage of the bill, which would require people applying to enter the country to apply from outside the country rather than seeking asylum after entering through the border.

“The Democratic Party has to admit that Trump’s not the problem here, they are,” Graham said. “The Biden Administration, by giving an exception to unaccompanied minors from being deported under Title 42, has created a flow problem that we haven’t seen before because word is out in Central America, if an unaccompanied minor gets to the United States, they’re not going to be sent back.”

Graham has also brushed off claims that Trump-era policies are to blame for the border issues.

“Trump’s got nothing to do with this. This is not Trump’s fault. That’s a bunch of BS,” he said. “This is policy choices that were ill conceived that have blown up in (the) Biden Administration’s face.”

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