May 11, 2023

Gallego Slams Sham Republican Border Bill

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, Rep. Ruben Gallego (AZ-03) voted against H.R. 2 – House Republicans’ extreme, cruel, and unworkable border bill.  

Statement from Rep. Ruben Gallego (AZ-03):  

“There is no universe in which this bill is a serious solution to reforming our immigration system. Comprehensive reform means addressing the humanitarian crisis, cracking down on traffickers, and reforming the asylum process so that legitimate applicants are not waiting years in limbo.  

“Instead, H.R. 2 doubles down on Trump-era policies that are not only cruel, but that we know don’t work. It would tear families apart, waste taxpayer money, and make our already broken system even more ineffective. At the same time, it would cripple our ports of entry – allowing deadly fentanyl to continue to flow into the country and hampering the millions of dollars in trade that are critical to Arizona’s economy.

“I’m interested in finding real solutions to the humanitarian and security crisis at our border. H.R. 2 is not a real solution and that is why I voted against it.”  

If H.R. 2 were to become law, it would:  

  • Eliminate protections for unaccompanied children – allowing them to be detained for weeks, depriving them of attorneys who can help protect them from trafficking, and sending them alone to dangerous conditions.  

  • Make it impossible for migrants to seek asylum between ports of entry, while at the same time also making it harder for CBP to process asylum claims at ports of entry.  

  • Severely limit humanitarian parole, turning away people fleeing war, violence, and humanitarian disasters like Ukrainian families and our Afghan allies.  

  • Prevent faith-based and non-profit organizations from providing life-saving assistance to children and families.  
    • Arizona border communities rely on organizations like Catholic Charities to help them process, house, feed, and transport migrants. That is why Rep. Gallego sent letters to FEMA and Congressional leaders calling for more support for these vital organizations. H.R. 2 will disrupt the work of these NGOs, putting even more strain on border communities.  

  • Do nothing to stop the deadly flow of fentanyl into the U.S.  
    • During markup, Homeland Security Republicans voted against an amendment that would have authorized an additional 1,700 CBP officers at ports of entry – where 90% of drug seizures occur.  
    • Last month, House Republicans voted for budget cuts that would lead to the layoff of 2,400 CBP officers.  
    • Last year, Rep. Gallego voted for the fiscal year 2023 omnibus which makes smart investments to address drug smuggling including non-intrusive inspection systems and increased personnel at points of entry.  

  • Cost taxpayers $6.1 billion, including through construction of 900 miles of ineffective and impractical border wall.
    • CBP records show that newer segments of the border wall have been breached over 3,272 times.