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Sinema, Cornyn lead bipartisan group of lawmakers on border tour


(The Center Square) – Arizona’s newly-independent U.S. senator and a senior Texas Republican plan to bring several of their colleagues to the southern border for a firsthand look at what she calls “Washington’s failure.”

Sen. Kyrsten Sinema, I-Ariz., and Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, announced Friday they’re hosting six other senators in El Paso, Texas, and Yuma, Arizona, to “see the many challenges at the Southwest Border, meet with the brave men and women tasked with securing the border, and hear from local law enforcement, community leaders, and non-profits” responsible for asylum seekers out of federal custody.

“Arizona border communities shoulder the burden of Washington’s failure to solve our border and immigration crisis,” Sinema said. “I’m glad to lead a bipartisan group of my colleagues to visit the Southwest Border and I appreciate their commitment to learning and understanding the many diverse challenges facing our border communities. I believe by working together we can bridge divides, help find lasting solutions, and start solving the crisis at our border.”

Until the U.S. House of Representatives settles its leadership issue, Sinema chairs the Border Management Subcommittee.

Accompanying the two are Sens. Mark Kelly, D-Ariz., Thom Tillis, R-N.C., James Lankford, R-Okla., Chris Coons, D-Del., Jerry Moran, R-Kan., and Chris Murphy, D-Conn.

The senators are to visit El Paso and Yuma on Monday and Tuesday.

“The humanitarian and national security crisis at our southern border has created untenable and unacceptable challenges for Texas communities along the U.S.-Mexico border, which is why I’m glad my colleagues from across the country will see the impacts of this firsthand,” Cornyn said. “On this visit, we will hear from the men and women working around the clock to manage the strain of this crisis, and I hope this will result in meaningful discussions about finally securing our border and giving these communities tangible relief.”

The visits come as the southwest border ends a record year in encounters. According to U.S. Customs and Border Protection data, a record 3 million illegal foreign nationals were apprehended or recorded evading capture by Border Patrol agents in fiscal year 2022, according to data obtained by The Center Square.

On Thursday, President Joe Biden announced an expansion of a “legal immigration” plan, including using an existing parole system to allow an additional 360,000 foreign nationals that entered the country illegally to be released into the United States.

Published with permission from The Center Square.

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