Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX) wrote a letter Friday to Vice President Kamala Harris requesting the administration terminate the federal border facility in Texas, which houses unaccompanied foreign minors.
“Now that President Biden has named you Border Czar in charge of the administration’s response, I want to express to you the threats and challenges caused by this administration’s open border policies,” the letter reads. “In your role as Border Czar, you have a duty to these children and the American people to act immediately. I implore you to act immediately to protect these children, secure the border, and end this crisis.”
“The State of Texas previously warned about overcrowded conditions at these facilities, and now those conditions have led to allegations of child abuse and neglect,” he added.
“Our repeated warnings and questions have gone ignored by President Biden, yourself, and Department of Homeland Security Secretary [Alejandro] Mayorkas,” continued Abbott.
Your “policies embolden and enrich cartels, smugglers, and human traffickers who continue to ramp up their criminal operations. Given your new role as the administration’s Border Czar, I urge you to visit the border to see the crisis for yourself,” the governor said.
The letter also requested answers from the Vice President to a list of questions:
- Who is assisting these children as they travel through Mexico and cross the U.S. border?
- U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Mayorkas has acknowledged that many of these children have been abused or harmed during their journeys. What is the administration doing to eliminate that harm?
- Were these children forced to carry contraband into the United States?
- Were these children or their families assisted, coerced, and threatened by cartel members or human traffickers?
- The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has vaguely suggested that these children are screened by appropriately trained personnel to identify potential victims of abuse, assault, and trafficking, but has provided no further information. What screening is being done? When is that screening taking place and by whom? Are these children being provided a thorough medical screening that may separately identify abuse and assault?
- How many victims of physical abuse, sexual assault, or trafficking has the administration identified?
- Is the federal government using DNA tests to confirm familial relations? How else is the administration ensuring that these children are being released to safe, trustworthy adults?
- What specific measures can the administration point to that confirm that these children are not released to human traffickers in the United States?
- What action is your administration taking to prosecute those who traffic unaccompanied minors?
The letter follows visits by Republican members of the House and Senate, who toured the border and Texas facilities in which Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said, “if you had any facility that takes care of kids that was even a fraction of what the Biden administration has set up, you’d be shut down.”
“The public health authorities would go after you. You would be fined. You might even be prosecuted. These cages that the kids were in, they weren’t six feet apart,” Cruz doubled down.