Sen. Tom Cotton says every migrant he talked to at the border admitted their asylum claims were illegitimate

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WASHINGTON, DC – A report by the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) shows the number of migrant apprehensions at the southern border has reached a 15-year high. Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AR) says he has a plan to solve the crisis claiming migrants he spoke with admitted not having legitimate asylum claims.

In an exclusive interview with  Breitbart News on Friday, the Arkansas senator said that migrants he spoke with at the border admitted they were not entering the United States because of fear of persecution, but for economic reasons. He said:

“I talked to so many of these migrants, you know, on the side, they did the dog and pony show with a bunch of other senators. I grabbed a border patrol officer who spoke Spanish. We went, we just talked to some of them sitting on the benches waiting to be processed. I said, “Where are you from? How long did it take you to get here? Why did you come?’

“And to a person, they said, ‘I came to get a job,’ or, ‘I came to get together with my husband or my wife or my boyfriend or girlfriend who’s here and has a job.’ Not a single person claimed a genuine claim of asylum.”

Sen. Cotton then went after the Biden administration for sending a message to the world that immigrants at the border would be welcome:

“(The Biden administration’s) rhetoric and their policies have induced thousands and thousands of migrants to flood our borders to the point where we’re now simply releasing them into the country without so much as a notice to appear in court, asking them politely to go to their final destination and then show up and report themselves to the immigration authorities.

“There’s nothing moral and there’s nothing virtuous about Joe Biden’s rhetoric and policies that have induced these young women and these young children to make a very dangerous journey across almost 2,000 miles of Mexico to get our border on the hope that they will be admitted into our country and given legal status permanently. That’s simply not the case.”

The migrants should have been told from the start to stay home and avoid the long journey to the border, according to Sen. Cotton. He said that because of President Biden’s words and policies, migrants are flooding across the border into the U.S. and may never leave:

“Now, (migrants) may get (into) the country and they may never go home, and that’s part of the problem, but the idea that they were going to get asylum is simply false. Almost all these asylum claims are bogus.

The message should have been, ‘Stay in your country. Do not come to ours. If you come, you will not get in, and we will send you home.’ It’s exactly what it was under the Trump administration, and the policies matched it.”

“During the pandemic, President Trump instituted an order that refused to allow anyone to enter the country. A simple common-sense health and safety measure. We also said you had to apply for asylum in the first safe country through which you entered. Usually, it’s going to be Guatemala.

And finally, if you apply for Guatemala and you didn’t get asylum there and you came to our borders, you could apply for asylum [in America] but you had to remain in Mexico. Those three policies alone essentially closed our border to these bogus asylum claims.”

The senator said that new policies are needed to stop the border patrol from having to be babysitters and social workers for thousands of migrant children, who the Biden administration struggles to deal with:

“Let our Border Patrol focus on what they signed up to do. These great men and women who signed up as law enforcement officers to protect our border from gangs and from drugs, and instead, they are being compelled to serve as babysitters and social workers, right now.”

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On Thursday, April 1, Sen. Cotton introduced the “End the Border Crisis Now Act.” The bill is designed to reverse President Biden’s immigration policies and strengthen asylum protocols to “combat” the crisis at the border.

In a press release, Sen. Cotton said:

“President Biden’s reversal of President Trump’s immigration policies has caused a surge of illegal migrants at our southern border who are seeking better jobs—not fleeing from harm.

“My bill would require migrants seeking asylum to apply for protection before making the dangerous trek to our southern border. President Biden must change course and secure our borders now.”

The bill would require migrants seeking refugee or asylum protection in the United States to apply through the refugee program before arriving at the border. Additionally, asylum claims by migrants inside the United States would be limited to those who made lawful entry.

Another provision of the bill requires that any migrants who travel through a safe country en route to the United States must first apply for asylum “or equivalent protection” in those countries before they can apply in the United States.

The CBP report released Friday stated that more than 170,000 border crossings were recorded in March. This is a significant increase from the 78,000 crossings in January. More than 18,000 minors were apprehended at the border, a 60 percent increase from the previous record set in May 2019.

The border surge has caused a log jam in processing arriving migrants, and unaccompanied children are having to be held in temporary facilities beyond the time allowed by federal law.

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