Friday, March 6, 2020

Border chief: Wall Cuts Illegal Crossings 80%

Ruben R. Ramirez/The El Paso Times via AP
A 20-mile section of new border wall built near El Paso, Texas, cut illegal crossings by more than 80%, the government’s top border official told Congress on Thursday.
Mark Morgan, acting commissioner of Customs and Border Protection, said the key is not just the border wall but the entire system being built, with roads and lighting and, in some cases, multiple layers of fencing.
He said that’s giving agents more time to get to spots where breakthroughs happen, and when they can respond, they can make arrests or force people to retreat back into Mexico.
“We’ve seen apprehensions and illegal entries and gotaways all being reduced by over 80% in that 20-mile stretch,” Mr. Morgan told the House Appropriations Committee.
President Trump’s wall-building campaign is among the most divisive moves of his administration and has dominated this week’s series of hearings as Department of Homeland Security officials defend their fiscal 2021 budget proposal.
Democrats pointed to reports that even the new designs can be cut through using tools available at a hardware store, and questioned the value of the tens of billions of dollars Mr. Trump wants to spend.
Mr. Morgan said the wall isn’t only about blocking people — it’s about shaping their activities, delaying and funneling them into place where agents are able to respond.
“It’s not that it’s impenetrable. But it does deny and impede long enough for Border Patrol agents to actually get there to do the apprehension and interdiction. And it works.”
Read the rest of the story HERE.

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