White House pits immigration deal collapse as GOP vs. Border Patrol

The White House on Thursday framed the bipartisan border security deal collapse as a move by Republicans that contradicts Border Patrol, which endorsed the deal.

White House deputy press secretary Andrew Bates wrote in a memo that law enforcement’s situation at the U.S. southern border is getting “more urgent” and that Border Patrol has asked Congress for more funding.

“But congressional Republicans — highlighting Donald Trump’s fear that securing the border would hurt his personal politics — keep slamming the door in the face of the brave men and women at the border. Congressional Republicans have been happy to say ‘yes’ to border photo ops for years,” Bates said. “Now, DHS [Department of Homeland Security] is running out of money for its removal operations and detention capacity.”

“Congressional Republicans are saying ‘no.’ They are choosing Donald Trump, smugglers, and fentanyl traffickers over law enforcement at the border,” he added.

In remarks earlier this week, President Biden highlighted that the bill had the backing of the National Border Patrol Council, the border patrol union that endorsed Trump in 2020. He blamed Trump, who came out in opposition of the legislation, for torpedoing the bill for political reasons and accused him of trying to intimidate Republican lawmakers into opposing the bill.

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Bates, in the memo, also argued that Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) “mocked” Border Patrol for their support of the bipartisan bill when he said on Fox News, “I think it does have something to do with the pay structure that’s in the bill.”

“Unfortunately, this is a pattern for House Republicans — in front of TV cameras, they claim to support law enforcement. But then they turn around and vote ‘no’ when it matters,” Bates added.

Biden’s reelection campaign also has framed the collapse of the deal as Republicans preventing Border Patrol agents from having resources. The campaign called out Trump on Wednesday for standing in the way of resources going to Border Patrol agents to handle the situation.

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