A Department of Homeland Security order to block Democratic staff members from the House Oversight Committee from visiting border facilities is merited because, during their last visit, they went in with plans to disrupt operations rather than to learn, Rep. Doug Collins said Thursday.
"You don't go down (there) with your mind made up," the Georgia Republican told Fox News' "Fox and Friends." "You don't go down and have a determination that the border patrol agents are the villains in this, and that's what we are seeing. They are simply reflective of members of the Democratic Party who refuse to actually look at what's going on at the border . . . they would rather go down and complain."
Fox News reported Wednesday that committee Chairman Elijah Cummings, D-Md., had sent his staff last week to conduct oversight investigations and had planned to send staff members again this week to visit Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Border Patrol centers. However, DHS revoked their access to the CBP centers, saying that the staffers interfered with law enforcement officials during last week's tours.
They said the Democratic staffers refused to leave one site after their scheduled time there, skipped some tours, and were rude to officers. The ICE visits are still being allowed this week, but they have a two-hour time limit.
"It is not surprising to me," said Collins. "They are simply reflecting members who don't want to solve a problem. They seem to enjoy having the issue much more than they would like to solve it. It's a distraction to what's going on down there."
Collins said he thinks the staffers went over the line, and DHS took steps to send a message that border agents have a job to do.
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