In an op-ed for Fox News on Tuesday, two House representatives from the hardline Freedom Caucus urged Congress and President Trump to stand firm and demand a spending bill that included $5 billion for the border wall. Reps. Mark Meadows and Jim Jordan said that neither Trump nor conservatives on Capitol Hill could afford to let this – possibly final – opportunity to slip through their fingers. Put plainly, when it comes to the wall, it’s now or never.
“Voters elected President Trump to shake up Washington,” the lawmakers wrote. “In his first two years, the president has kept his promises. Now it is Congress’ turn. We have three weeks to help him deliver on his biggest promise: securing the border and building the wall.”
In their op-ed, Meadows and Jordan highlighted the fact that this was about more than politics, about more than simply living up to a campaign promise. This is about preserving who we are as a nation.
“The situation at the southern border is critical. The recent caravan was only the first of many. They’re coming because they have a reason,” Meadows and Jordan wrote. “A series of loopholes in our immigration laws have led to a policy called ‘catch and release.’ When illegal aliens are caught at the border, these loopholes often allow them to enter our nation to wait for an immigration hearing. Sometimes these hearings are years in the future. All too frequently, they don’t even show up.”
The point is, our immigration laws – at least as they have been interpreted by the courts – give people from Central America every reason in the world to try their luck in crossing the border. You can’t even blame them. They see an opportunity and they take it. It’s not up to them to change; it’s up to us to disincentivize the journey. It’s up to us to make it so difficult to come into this country illegally that…they simply stop trying.
“The border security wall will help fix the issue,” the congressmen wrote. “Apprehensions dropped 95 percent in the San Diego sector after the double barrier was put into place. Israel’s border wall cut illegal immigration by 99 percent.
“The last legislative opportunity to address these issues is the year-end spending bill,” they warned. “The fact that it’s a bill that must pass creates the burning platform needed to force Congress to actually act and the leverage we need to get these reforms through the Senate. The funding bill is the only option.”