U.S. Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) has forwarded correspondence to Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, urging DHS action regarding reported increased southern border terrorist apprehensions.
“Recent reports have shown an increase of terrorist apprehensions in recent months,” Ernst wrote. “This concern is compounded by the understaffing of border patrol agents, the lack of coordination between federal agencies, and the administration’s continued and further incentivization of illegal immigration. It is simple statistics. The higher the number of illegal immigrants, the higher the likelihood of a terrorist slipping through the cracks.”
Ernst maintains DHS’ current trajectory places Americans at risk and must be immediately addressed.
In the letter, Ernst seeks from DHS answers to several questions, including the current protocol for identifying individuals in the Terrorist Screening Database and the typical length of the process; DHS procedures for coordinating with other agencies, such as the FBI, to ensure screening is done in an expedited fashion; whether more terrorists have been apprehended at the southern border since May 2022; and the nationality of terrorists that have been apprehended and their known terrorist affiliations.
“Our national security is paramount,” Ernst concluded. “DHS is only making its job harder by continuing to fuel illegal immigration, putting a further strain on our CBP agents and making it more difficult to catch terrorists due to the sheer
volume of illegal immigrants crossing our borders.”