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Thursday, July 25, 2024

Biden Still Hasn’t Chosen Border Chief as Immigration Crisis Grows

'The border is not open. Do not believe the human smugglers who will try to tell you otherwise...'

President Joe Biden still has not nominated a commissioner to lead Customs and Border Protection, the federal agency that oversees the nation’s borders, even as the immigration crisis swells to historic levels.

CBP’s law enforcement personnel inspects people and goods at border stations, airports and sea ports of entry.

They also assist Immigration and Customs Enforcement in arresting those who attempt to enter the country illegally.

But despite its central role in border security, CBP has now entered its third month without official leadership.

This delay isn’t uncommon, according to the Washington Examiner. However, it could hurt the agency’s ability to efficiently do its job, especially as thousands of migrants flood the U.S.–Mexico border.

Last month alone, nearly 100,000 people were apprehended crossing the southern border.

In the interim, Troy Miller—who had been CBP’s director of field operations for New York—is filling the role of senior official performing the duties of the commissioner.

The title was also used by former president Donald Trump’s two prior CBP leaders after the Senate slow-walked their formal confirmations.

It is unclear whether that meant Biden intended to keep Miller in the role without seeking Senate approval.

Miller has defended the Biden administration’s response to the immigration crisis, but admitted there are “push factors” exacerbating the problem.

“First of all, let’s be clear, the border is not open,” Miller said earlier this month.

He said CBP faced the unique challenge during its current onslaught of maintaining an “orderly” system that would process asylum claims expeditiously while protecting public health.

Hundreds of immigrants have been admitted to the country after testing positive for the coronavirus, and many more unaccompanied minors may have been exposed to it in detention centers that are currently off limits to civilian watchdogs.

“We are moving as fast as we can to rebuild … but this is going to take time,” Miller said.

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“In the meantime, the border is not open,” he reiterated. “Do not believe the human smugglers who will try to tell you otherwise.”

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