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David Perdue: Southern Border Crisis Is ‘Staggering’

Senator David Perdue, a Republican from Georgia, speaks to members of the media in the basement of the U.S. Capitol after a weekly GOP luncheon meeting in Washington, D.C., U.S., on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017. The Senate Budget Committee sent Republicans massive tax-cut bill to the full Senate for a …
Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg via Getty Images
SEAN MORAN

Sen. David Perdue (R-GA) talked about his trip to the southern border and said the crisis is “staggering.”

Sen. Perdue visited the border on early Monday morning with Sen. Steve Daines (R-MT) to see the border security crisis firsthand. The two Republicans saw illegal crossing hotspots and received real-time briefings from border patrol agents.

Perdue and Daines’ trip came as Congress works on passing a potential compromise bill that would provide a fraction of President Donald Trump’s requested $5.7 billion in border wall funding, as well as increased border patrol officers.

Sen. Perdue said that he has gained a different perspective from his trip to the border and called the security crisis, “staggering.” He said:

I have a different perspective coming back from the border. We were out there all night with border patrol agents who were apprehending people crossing there illegally. It was shocking to see the security crisis there on the ground. There are Mexican drug cartels right across the river who are violently opposing each other and trying to dominate that sector. So, there are a lot of drugs coming across that border. Both at the POEs (Ports of Entry) but also literally on rafts coming across the river. So we saw the rafts, we saw the scouts, we saw the mules as they call them that actually bring drugs across in open daylight. It was staggering.

(All images courtesy office of Sen. David Perdue)

Perdue & Daines Border Visit

Sens. Perdue and Daines said in a joint statement this week:

There is an illegal drug and security crisis at our southern border. Those who call this crisis ‘manufactured’ are ignoring reality. As we saw firsthand, U.S. border patrol agents are facing consequences of a porous border every day without adequate physical barriers and resources. It’s now clear that the real tragedy is the dramatic increase in illegal drug trafficking. We will continue working to ensure our border patrol agents have the resources they need, so they can do their jobs and protect Americans.

There has been a dramatic spike in illegal drug crossing America’s southern border. From the fiscal year 2017 to 2018 there has been a:

  • 38 percent increase in methamphetamine
  • 22 percent increase in heroin
  • 73 percent increase in fentanyl

In the fiscal year 2018, the U.S. Customs and Border Protection seized over 1.7 million pounds of narcotics, which includes:

  • 282,000 pounds of cocaine
  • 248,000 pounds of methamphetamine
  • 6,500 pounds of heroin
  • 2,400 pounds of fentanyl.

The Georgia Republican continued:

I have a different perspective coming back from the border. We were out there all night with border patrol agents who were apprehending people crossing there illegally. It was shocking to see the security crisis there on the ground. There are Mexican drug cartels right across the river who are violently opposing each other and trying to dominate that sector. So, there are a lot of drugs coming across that border. Both at the POEs (Ports of Entry) but also literally on rafts coming across the river. So we saw the rafts, we saw the scouts, we saw the mules as they call them that actually bring drugs across in open daylight. It was staggering.

Perdue & Daines Border Visit

Sen. Perdue then said:

The security crisis is clear when you’re at the border and see it personally in an overnight patrol. We were out there watching the apprehensions, watching drugs come across the river, and listening to scouts talk about where the patrols were. The three areas along the border where previous U.S. presidents built walls have seen illegal drug and human trafficking reduced by about 95 percent. Building 55 additional miles this year will keep the momentum going on what the past four presidents have built.

Perdue & Daines Border Visit

“Both sides have agreed there’s a security issue at our southern border, but it has been politicized. I hope the deal that’s on the table this week will get us past this impasse,” Perdue added.

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