U.S. Rep. Anthony D’Esposito (R-Island Park) over the weekend traveled to the United States-Mexico border in El Paso with members of the House Homeland Security Committee to assess the security situation.
D’Espositio met with representatives from law enforcement and Homeland Security, among others, his office said.
“The deteriorating security situation along the United States-Mexico border poses a threat to American communities across the country, not just here in Texas,” D’Esposito said in a statement. “The federal government’s underfunding of area law enforcement agencies like Customs and Border Protection has produced a situation where an untold amount of drug smugglers, human traffickers, and other illegal entrants can cross into the United States with ease. It is vital the Biden administration directs additional funding to beleaguered CBP personnel and provides them with the tools they need to secure our Nation’s borders.”
While meeting with border patrol agents, the congressman witnessed the seizure of fentanyl from a smuggler’s car as they were trying to enter the United States in what his office said highlighted the “glaring security deficiencies currently plaguing America’s southern border.”
Unlawful southwest border crossings dropped significantly under an expanded parole program for Cuban, Haitian, Nicaraguan and Venezuelan non-citizens, according to the Department of Homeland Security.
Preliminary January numbers show the encounters of Cuban, Haitian, Nicaraguan and Venezuelan non-citizens declining 97% compared to December. Encounters with these specific individuals dropped from a 7-day average of 3,367 per day on Dec. 11 to 115 on Jan. 24.
D’Esposito, serving his first term in the state’s 4th Congressional District after winning the seat left vacated by Democrat Kathleen Rice, is a retired NYPD detective who last served on the Town of Hempstead’s Town Board, representing the 4th District.
Along with the Committee on Homeland Security, D’Esposito is also assigned to the Committee on House Administration and Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure.