Port of entry infrastructure along the U.S. borders has struggled to keep up with the needs of cross-border trade and travelers, lawmakers and federal officials testing during a House hearing.
A Republican congressman said he intends to introduce legislation directing federal officials to account for the whereabouts of unaccompanied migrant children that are flooding the Southwest border.
Two lawmakers plan to introduce bipartisan border legislation that they say would treat all unaccompanied minors crossing the southern border equally and ensure due process. Though text of the legislation isn't available, a July 16 statement from Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) it would allow for voluntary reunification of children with their families whether they are from Mexico, Central America or any other country.
Crime, poverty, educational and economic opportunities, and family reunification may be several reasons behind the recent surge of unaccompanied, mostly Central American children into the Southwest border of the United States, a recent report says. But the precise combination of these "push" and "pull" motives is still unclear, the Congressional Research Service authors wrote.
Visiting Texas for the first time since the immigration crisis at the Southwest border, President Obama said July 9 that he had a "constructive conversation" with Gov. Rick Perry about the surge of unaccompanied child migrants and what can be done to stem the tide.
President Barack Obama is seeking $3.7 billion in emergency appropriations from Congress to help deal with the thousands of unaccompanied children crossing the southwest border.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry asked the federal government to reimburse his state for a decade of contributions to border security during a House hearing July 3.
Overturning a lower court's decision, a federal appeals court ruled that a Mexican boy killed by a Border Patrol agent may have had his Fifth Amendment rights violated, even though he was shot in Mexico and was not a U.S. citizen.
While the Homeland Security Department has established performance measures and reporting processes within multiagency security efforts along the Southwest border, congressional investigators said it still needs to do more to strengthen the collaboration and improve efficiency.
Two Homeland Security Department officials testified before a Senate subcommittee that international travelers face several challenges, such as increased wait times and poor service at many U.S. ports of entry, but efforts are underway to improve those areas as the U.S. tries to reach a goal of attracting 100 million visitors annually by 2021.