Republican governors call for policy changes along southern border
OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) – Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts and Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds joined nine other Republican governors on Wednesday morning to tour the US-Mexico border.
“We’re here today to shine a light on what’s happening on the southern border and how it affects all states, not just the state of Texas,” Ricketts said as he stepped onto the podium. “The president must act. He can no longer continue to ignore this humanitarian crisis and this security crisis. “
The group of governors presented a list of policies that they believe will help secure the border and keep communities safe, including giving ICE the green light for more deportations.
“What we are seeing coming out of the Biden administration is an incentive for real migration and illegal crossings have peaked in 20 years,” Reynolds said.
“When President Biden took office, the first thing he did was issue an executive order directing ICE to carry out limited deportations. This is unacceptable. It should never have happened, ”Reynolds said. “All convicted, illegal and illegal criminals must be deported and that is another thing he could do tomorrow.”
Other policies presented include finishing the border wall and requiring asylum seekers to wait in Mexico for their court hearing.
“One of the things the Biden administration needs to do is end the capture and release program. It just makes people cross the border illegally because they are then released, ”Ricketts said.
“Our position is that Gov. Ricketts and the proposal of the other Republican governor here, some parts go against our existing legal system which is in place to address this exact situation,” said Erik Omar, Executive Director from the Immigrant Legal Center, noting that mass migration is not new to the United States; it is a country built by those who seek a better life.
“Many of the people arriving at our southern border are asylum seekers. There is a legal process for this and we are required by law to deal with them, ”Omar said, adding that allowing people to stay in the country while they are doing so is a positive thing. “They work alongside you at your job, they contribute to our economy, they pay state, federal and local taxes, their children play football with your children.”
While he recognizes that the immigration system needs an overhaul, he said it can be done while accommodating even mass migration.
“When it comes to the community level and the state level, there is a lot of fear and I think we have to look beyond that as Nebraskans,” Omar said.
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