Biden’s lax border policies flood Idaho law enforcement

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By American senses Mike Crapo and Jim Risch

The Biden administration’s “catch and release” policies and porous border policies give drug cartels easy access to distribute deadly drugs, traffic unsuspecting victims, and leave a wake of violence in our neighborhoods. . We must secure our border immediately.

The Biden administration’s border policies have opened the floodgates:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reported more than 2 million illegal immigrant encounters at our southern border this year, far exceeding last year’s record total.

Fentanyl seizures rose 203% in July and another 6% in August, according to CBP. Idaho State Police reported in 2021 that drug-related crimes increased 8.3% from 2020, most of which involve fentanyl.

CBP press releases should set off alarm bells. For example, CBP reported in August that Rio Grande Valley Sector (RGV) Border Patrol agents “encountered more than 130 large groups of unaccompanied adults and children illegally entering the United States. since October 2021, resulting in more than 21,000 migrant arrests.”

Additionally, in August, CBP officers at the Otay Mesa port of entry in California found more than $12 million worth of narcotics concealed in a shipment of heavy machinery. The seizure included 41.75 pounds of fentanyl, enough to kill more than 9 million people.

These numbers represent only a small fraction of the hundreds of thousands of people and pounds of illicit drugs entering the United States through our southern border.

The Biden administration’s lax border policies have led to this dangerous and deadly influx of fentanyl and drug trafficking that has hit communities across Idaho and our country. Fentanyl has been a major driver of the severe increase in drug crimes in Idaho, as the amount of fentanyl seized at the US southern border steadily increases.

In eastern Idaho alone, the Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office and the Idaho Falls Police Department report that fentanyl is the primary means of drug-related deaths and overdoses, but the Biden administration denied a request to add Bonneville County to the Oregon-Idaho High Intensity Drug Trafficking Zone designation. The designation would provide additional training and resources to help Idaho communities deal with this crisis.

We have consistently supported the efforts of Idaho law enforcement to remove these drugs from our streets, taking a number of actions calling on the Biden administration to act appropriately, including:

• Senator Risch’s introduction of the Border Crisis Resolution Act to implement sensible solutions to secure the border and prevent this disaster from getting worse;

• Co-sponsor legislation to close the “catch and release” loophole that requires immigration authorities to return to the United States illegal aliens who have not been accepted for deportation to other countries after been detained for six months;

• Co-sponsor the Stop Fentanyl Border Crossing Act, which would expand Title 42 to restrict migration and importation to prevent illicit drugs from entering the United States; and more.

A remarkable 22% of CBP encounters along the southwest land border in August were with people who had had at least one previous encounter in the previous year. This means that illegal immigrants don’t seem to worry about the consequences of violating our border laws. The Biden administration’s lenient border policies have clearly sent a dangerous message. We commend law enforcement in Idaho for dealing with difficult situations, including the danger of exposure to illegally produced fentanyl.

We are grateful to the people of Idaho who work hard and put their lives on the line to keep our communities safe. Our hearts go out to those who have lost a family member or loved one to drug overdose. We will continue to push the Biden administration to secure our borders and support local law enforcement.

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