The Biden administration's push to end the use of Title 42 health emergency restrictions at the nation's border is "nothing more" than the Democrats' push to have an open border, Rep. Markwayne Mullin, R-Okla., said on Newsmax Tuesday.
"We were not prepared for this, and this is the last tool we have in place," Mullin said on "National Report," adding that former President Donald Trump enacted the rule, which restricts border crossings, for the reason of controlling disease, to "help us bring down the numbers, and it was effective."
But when President Joe Biden took office, he "did away" with almost all of the Trump-era border policies, except for Title 42, which came under health concerns because of COVID-19, and without it, the instances of catch-and-release policies in the United States will increase, he fears.
The congressman said that during a recent visit to the border, he rode on horseback with Border Patrol officers and saw firsthand how immigrants would come into the United States intending to be captured.
"We saw them on the on the south side of the border loading individuals up in cattle trailers and running them all the way down the border two or three miles ahead of us and releasing the individuals, so when we come across them, they would be sitting there ready to surrender to us," he said.
"They had their own pocket cards that they were staying, and they weren't trying to get away from us. They were simply wanting to be apprehended because they knew with the Biden catch-and-release policy in place ... they would be turned loose, and then probably never show up for their hearing."
The biggest problem with ending the use of Title 42 is that by allowing people into the country with no restrictions, immigrants who have criminal records — or may even be on the terrorist watch list — may enter the country without being delayed while a background check can be done, Mullin added.
"Title 42 isn't just a health concern," Mullin said. "It's a national security concern as well."
Meanwhile, Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz recently said that 1 million illegal crossings are expected in the first six months of this year, and expects an additional 500,000 on top of that without Title 42 in place, Mullin said.
"It's going to completely overrun this system," Mullin said. "We had the lowest illegal crossings in years."
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