Texas Dem Rep. Henry Cuellar begs Biden for border ‘repercussions’ to end migrant crisis


Texas Democratic Rep. Henry Cuellar begged President Biden Saturday to end the “catch and release” cycle drawing millions of illegal immigrants into the United States — echoing the complaints of his Republican House colleagues.

“You got to have repercussions at the border,” the 10-term congressman from the district that includes Laredo, Tex., told Fox News.

“The asylum law, the criteria for letting people in, can be adjusted,” Cuellar said — adding that existing law can be used to deport those who flout the entry rules.

“If you have in one-year millions of individuals that are encountered, and then you let hundreds and hundreds of thousands of them in, that becomes the pull factor,” Cuellar said. “That catch and release … is the pull factor.”

A record-setting 276,000 asylum seekers entered the US from Mexico in December, capping a record-breaking year — and forcing Biden to admit on Friday that “massive changes” in immigration policy are necessary.

Current administration policy allows nearly all migrants who illegally cross the border to enter the US and remain here for years until the backlogged asylum system can consider their case.

Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Texas Democrat, called for increased “repercussions” against illegal immigrants to end the border crisis. FOX News
Members of Congress toured an area of the US-Mexico border that had been fortified with concertina wire this month. AP
The Texas National Guard added barriers on the banks of the Rio Grande this week to deter migrant entry near Eagle Pass, Texas. REUTERS

Republicans want Biden to clamp down on the massive migrant influx by restoring former president Donald Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy for asylum seekers, and by quickly deporting those who enter the US illegally.

“Why are we allowing hundreds of thousands of them in when, at the end of the day, most of them are going to be rejected?” asked Cuellar, who in 2022 urged Biden to step up deportations of illegal immigrants.

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