Ted Cruz leads 18 GOP senators in midnight hunt for traffickers at Rio Grande, says cartel members taunted them
Ted Cruz blasted the Joe Biden administration as he led a group of Republican senators on a late-night trek along the Rio Grande river on the southern border to take a closer look at the immigration crisis, saying he could “hear cartel members taunting us”.
The Republican Senator from Texas led the group to the border on Friday, March 26, in order to visit facilities holding undocumented teenagers. Meanwhile, Democratic Representative Joaquin Castro of Texas led a group of House Democrats on their own excursion, The Blaze reported. A group of Republican senators are in the Rio Grande Valley to closely examine the so-called “border crisis” that President Biden and his administration have repeatedly refused to acknowledge despite record-high surges of migrants at the border. The Rio Grande Valley has reportedly seen some of the largest migrant influxes into the mainland.
Cruz spoke to reporters after touring a facility in Donna, Texas, where migrant teens were being held after crossing the border unaccompanied by a parent or guardian. “All of us witnessed the Biden cages,” he said, before criticizing the Biden administration for not letting reporters into the facility. “The Biden administration is trying to hide what is going on here,” he added.
The White House has simply stated that media will be allowed access to facilities run by US Customs and Border Patrol at some point, but not when specifically. They recently allowed a TV camera crew into a different facility in Carrizo Springs, Texas, where children were being held in much better conditions.
Taking to social media, Cruz posted several photos from the shelter for migrant teens. He also shared videos showing him on the bank of the Rio Grande in the dark, surrounded by tall grass, while watching smugglers brazenly transporting migrants across the water and into the US. “That’s Mexico right over there, and you can see there are three smugglers right there,” Cruz said in one video, “standing on the Mexico side looking at us.”
According to him, smugglers were taunting officials on the US side of the border by waving their flashlights. Cruz also posted another dramatic video titled “live footage from the banks of the Rio Grande,” where he was seen standing on the river’s edge had filling reporters in on what he and his colleagues had witnessed on their midnight march. “So it’s past midnight and I’m standing on the shore of the Rio Grande, the water is right behind me down. I’m down on the Texas border along with 18 senators, we made the trip to see the crisis that is playing out,” Cruz said while standing among weeds on the shoreline.
Border Patrol agents captured 100,441 migrants in February along the southern border, per the latest data available from US Customs and Border Protection (CBP). That’s a staggering 28 per cent increase from January, when 78,442 were reported, according to Daily Mail.
Republicans lashed out at Biden over alarming numbers. “On the other side of the river is Mexico,” Cruz explained. “The other side of the river we have been listening to and seeing cartel members, human traffickers right on the other side of the river, waving flashlights yelling and taunting Americans, taunting the Border Patrol, because they know that under the current policy the Biden administration, they can flood over here.”
Cruz, along with his Republican colleagues, blamed Biden’s new policies for the surge in border crossings. According to them, the crisis is a direct consequence of Biden’s executive orders that rolled back stricter border control policies put in place by former president Donald J Trump.
“This is a humanitarian crisis,” the Republican firebrand insisted. “It’s a public health crisis. The illegal immigrants who are being released, they’re testing positive for Covid-19 at a seven times higher rate than the American population. And it’s a national security crisis. And it’s time for the Biden administration to put an end to it. And stop sanctioning lawless chaos on our southern border,” he added.