Apparently, staging a dramatic photo of herself cringing at the sight of an empty parking lot and claiming it was a view of migrant children being locked in cages, was not enough. Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is at it again.
The Congresswoman was just one of several Democratic legislators visiting a Customs and Border Protection facility in Texas on Monday.
She claimed that CBP agents are forcing migrants to drink out of toilets and live under other extreme conditions, all while the officers sit back and laugh.
“I see why CBP officers were being so physically &sexually threatening towards me,” the congresswoman tweeted. “Officers were keeping women in cells with no water & had told them to drink out of the toilets,” she said. “This was them on their GOOD behavior in front of members of Congress.”
Now I’ve seen the inside of these facilities.
It’s not just the kids. It’s everyone. People drinking out of toilets, officers laughing in front of members Congress.
I brought it up to their superiors. They said “officers are under stress & act out sometimes.” No accountability.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) July 1, 2019
“Now I’ve seen the inside of these facilities,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.“It’s not just the kids. It’s everyone. People drinking out of toilets, officers laughing in front of members Congress.” She added, “I brought it up to their superiors. They said, ‘officers are under stress & act out sometimes.’ No accountability.”
But there’s one big problem.
According to The Washington Examiner’s Anna Giaritelli, the freshman Democrat didn’t actually tour the facility.
In fact, according to the report, she apparently refused to and instead chose to scream at federal law enforcement officers “in a threatening manner” Monday while visiting the U.S.-Mexico border.
SCOOP: Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., screamed at federal law enforcement agents “in a threatening manner” during a visit to a U.S. Border Patrol facility in El Paso, Texas, Monday afternoon and refused to tour the facility, according to two people who witnessed it.
— Anna Giaritelli (@Anna_Giaritelli) July 1, 2019
It is interesting that she would use the concept of accountability. AOC was visiting, in spite of CBP agents making what she called “threats to her life on social media.”
She said a “secret Facebook group” of 9,500 officers discussed making a GoFundMe to harm her and the other Dems during their visit. “This isn’t about ’a few bad eggs,’” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted early Monday afternoon. “This is a violent culture.”
And to these CBP officers saying they felt “threatened” by me –
They were literally discussing making a GoFundMe for an officer who attacked my on my tour.
They confiscated my phone, and they were all armed. I’m 5’4”.
They’re just upset I exposed their inhumane behavior.
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@AOC) July 2, 2019
The Congresswoman made multiple accusations of criminal wrongdoing against CBP agents on Monday. As always, no one is above the law, and if officers and agents are guilty of the things she claims, they must be held accountable.
However, law enforcement officers, at the state, local and federal levels are consummate professionals. It would be difficult to believe that they are guilty of the things she claims.
Who would act so brazenly in front of a Congressional delegation? Certainly not professional officers.
Like the officers being held accountable, if guilty of wrongdoing, so to should the Congresswoman if she cannot substantiate these claims.
These accusations are far-fetched at best — defamatory at worst. All this coming from the same person who compared the migrant detention facilities to German concentration camps.
She faced a tremendous amount of backlash for that statement, but somehow doubled down it when she challenged “Republican Holocaust Experts” to prove her wrong. More recently, she is backtracking and saying that she wasn’t referring to the concentration camps run by the Nazis in World War II.
She also famously posted a video on her social media, asking her followers to help her figure out the sound coming out of her kitchen sink. As it turns out, it was the garbage disposal.
Ocasio-Cortez, as well as several other Democrats, are using this as an opportunity to blame the current conditions at the border on President Trump and his administration. Never mind the fact that this administration has been working tirelessly to fix a broken immigration system. Never mind the fact that it these same people who are voting not to provide the funding necessary to make improvements at these facilities.
While Ocasio-Cortez was saying, “It is hard to understate the enormity of the problem,” she wrote. “We’re talking systemic cruelty w/ a dehumanizing culture that treats them like animals,” Trump said in an interview, defending conditions at migrant detention facilities during his tenure, “No, the conditions are much better than they were under President Obama.”
A CBP official denied the toilet accusations on Monday, insisting that the locations Ocasio-Cortez visited have standard-issue jail-type appliances with sinks that dispense safe drinking water attached to toilets in a single unit.
“‘No one is drinking toilet water,” the official said. “They’re drinking potable water from the sink attached to the toilet.” It’s what you would find in every municipal jail in the United States.”
No doubt the conditions at these facilities are hard. They were never designed to accommodate the numbers that are currently housed. Also undoubtedly, the officer, agents and administrators charged with the safety and well-being of the people residing there, take their responsibilities very seriously and act professionally and compassionately.
Lost in all of this: U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials confirmed they deployed “port hardening measures” just before 2 a.m. Monday at the Paso Del Norte bridge in order to control a “large and unruly group” that formed on the Mexican side of the crossing and “posed a threat to overrun the facility,” according to KTSM.
A witness who spoke with KTSM at the scene said he estimated a group of approximately 300 migrants attempted to cross the bridge, chanting, “vamos a cruzar,” Spanish for, “We’re going to cross.”
The man said he became fearful for his family once he saw the immediate deployment of CBP officers and Border Patrol agents, and the man attempted to quickly get them into El Paso before CBP closed all lanes of traffic.
KTSM’s Juarez correspondent confirmed the group consisted of about 250 Cuban and El Salvadoran migrants who had been gathered at the port since about midnight.
Traffic cameras from the scene showed barriers and concertina wire blocking all lanes of traffic. El Paso Police confirmed to KTSM they were notified by CBP of a protest on the bridge that was affecting traffic.
A news release from CBP states that multiple agencies responded to the overnight event, including CBP Mobile Field Force and Special Response Team members were deployed to the facility. U.S. Customs and Border Protection Air and Marine Operations, U.S. Border Patrol, Homeland Security Investigations, Federal Protective Services, and the El Paso Police Department.
Luckily, these groups of professionals did their jobs and were able to reopen the bridge without the crowd being able to overrun the border and disappear into the US. But of course, AOC and her delegation of photo opportunists would never had praised these efforts, but they would have certainly taken the time address the matter if the bridge had been over run. It’s all about the narrative.