Joe Biden’s capitulation to the radical Left and his administration’s embrace of open-border policies has sent a clear message to the world that securing our border and enforcing our immigration laws is not a priority. After Biden took office, his policy positions and executive actions to undo President Trump’s successful efforts to thwart illegal immigration set off a predictable but devastating rush toward our southern border.
Over the last 12 months, more than 2 million illegal immigrants crossed our borders, overloading our justice system. Customs and Border Protection facilities have become completely overrun. Joe Biden’s open-border policies have invited the flood of illegal immigrants, drugs, human trafficking, and crime. Our government is funding cartels who invest their profits into building even more sophisticated criminal enterprises.
Threatening to make the Biden border crisis even worse is the Biden Administration’s irresponsible plan to end Title 42 by the end of this month. Title 42 is the Trump-era pandemic rule that enabled our border and immigration officers to quickly expel illegal immigrants coming into our country.
READ MORE — Candidates speak out on ‘ghost flights’ of illegal immigrants into PA
Unfortunately, while Pennsylvania is over 1,400 miles away from the U.S.-Mexico border, Joe Biden’s disastrous border crisis has now turned every state across our country into a border state. This includes Pennsylvania.
Illegal drug cartels and the ensuing crimes they bring have spread far beyond our southern border. Dangerous drugs like fentanyl have flowed freely across our borders as cartel-run human- and drug-trafficking operations smuggle record amounts of deadly Chinese fentanyl and other drugs into the United States.
As a tragic result, U.S. drug overdoses from fentanyl skyrocketed, and drug overdose deaths in the U.S. last year topped 100,000 for the first time ever as a result of failures to keep these drugs off our streets. To put this shocking number in perspective, this is more deaths than Covid caused in Americans under age 50. We must do everything we can to stop the opioid epidemic that has devastated families across the nation.
In the face of this calamity, Joe Biden has made it clear that illegal immigrants will not be deported for breaking our laws and crossing our border — and even illegal immigrants who committed dangerous crimes may not even be a “priority” to be removed because of Biden’s edicts.
This is dangerous for our commonwealth and our communities, especially because of the recent dramatic increase in crimes committed by illegal immigrants. According to CBP statistics, the number of crimes classified as “assault, battery, domestic violence” committed by illegal immigrants rose a shocking 466 percent from 2020 to 2021, while sexual offenses rose 212 percent. Most disturbingly, the number of homicide and manslaughter convictions for illegal immigrants skyrocketed an astounding 1,900 percent.
When I am elected to the U.S. Senate, I pledge to fight to enforce the laws that are on the books and seek to hold Joe Biden and his administration responsible for their failures.
Across our country, Biden’s crisis is taking its toll and Pennsylvania is no exception. Last year, a woman was brutally sexually assaulted by an illegal immigrant on Philadelphia public transit. Refusing to take appropriate steps to secure our borders is a complete and utter betrayal of Pennsylvanians.
As the Biden Administration attempts to disperse the illegal immigrants, they’ve refused to turn away at our border from detention facilities, they’re being flown across the country — including to Pennsylvania. Just two months ago, the Department of Health and Human Services loaded flights with illegal immigrants from Texas on chartered “ghost flights” in the dead of night and flew them right into our backyards in Northeast Pennsylvania.
I had the chance to visit the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport and speak directly with people on the ground and leaders in the community about these “ghost flights.” I don’t fault the agents for following orders, but due to the Biden Administration’s lack of transparency about these individuals being released into our community, we are left with more questions than answers.
This crisis was avoidable. When I am elected to the U.S. Senate, I pledge to fight to enforce the laws that are on the books and seek to hold Joe Biden and his administration responsible for their failures. I’ll make sure Pennsylvanians know the truth about the situation and fight to make sure we put a stop to the policies that enabled these “ghost flights.” I’ll work to pursue real solutions so that we can keep Pennsylvanians safe and prevent dangerous drugs from reaching our streets.
Securing our border may not be Joe Biden’s top priority, but I can assure my fellow Pennsylvanians that it is mine.
Editor’s note: With the primary election rapidly approaching, Broad + Liberty welcomes candidates to share their opinions on issues affecting Pennsylvania, the nation, and the wider world by submitting their thoughts to email@example.com. We sincerely thank Dr. Oz for his contribution.
Dr. Mehmet Oz is a cardiothoracic surgeon, award-winning author, and former daytime television host running for U.S. Senate in Pennsylvania.