Jagaul.com Business House Speaker Mike Johnson urges Biden to use executive action at the southern border

House Speaker Mike Johnson urges Biden to use executive action at the southern border

House Speaker Mike Johnson, a Louisiana Republican, blamed President Biden for the migrant crisis, saying Wednesday that the president has the authority to significantly reduce the record number of border crossings without action from Congress. 

“On his first day in office, President Biden came in and issued executive orders that began this chaos,” Johnson told “Face the Nation” moderator Margaret Brennan in an interview in Eagle Pass, Texas. “Remain in Mexico is one of them.”

The Remain in Mexico policy, officially called the Migrant Protection Protocols, was implemented by the Trump administration in early 2019 to deter migration to the U.S.-Mexico border. It required migrants seeking asylum in the U.S. to wait in Mexico until their court dates. 

Mr. Biden ended the policy soon after taking office, saying it was inhumane. After months of legal battles, federal courts ordered the government to reinstate it. The Supreme Court ruled in June 2022 that the Biden administration had the authority to end the program and it is no longer being implemented.

A senior administration official told CBS News nothing is completely off the table, but added the administration needs Mexico’s help with the hemispheric-wide crisis and it is not going to “stuff things down their throats.”

The Mexican government has issued statements rejecting any proposed revival of Remain in Mexico.  

Johnson also said the Biden administration “could end catch and release.”  

When asked about the need for logistical and financial support at the border that can only be provided through acts of Congress, Johnson said a top U.S. Border Patrol official told him the situation was comparable to an open fire hydrant. 

“He said, ‘I don’t need more buckets, I need the flow to be turned off.’ And the way you do that is with policy changes,” Johnson said. “We’re just asking the White House to apply common sense, and they seem to be completely uninterested in doing so.” 

There’s recently been a sharp drop in the number of migrants being processed at the border after arrivals hit a record high in December and strained resources in some communities across the U.S.

The White House and a bipartisan group of senators have been negotiating a package that would make substantial changes to immigration and border security laws. The negotiations come as Republicans demand harsher policies in exchange for more aid to Ukraine. 

Watch more of Margaret Brennan’s interview with House Speaker Mike Johnson on Sunday on “Face the Nation” at 10:30 a.m. ET.

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