Senator James Lankford (R-OK) on Thursday questioned national security officials in a Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee hearing entitled “Threats to the Homeland,” an annual hearing that seeks to address some of the most pressing issues facing US national security and the ways in which the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC), and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) work together to thwart potential threats. The panel consisted of FBI Director Christopher Wray, NCTC Director Christine Abizaid, and DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
Lankford, the lead Republican on the Homeland Security Committee’s Subcommittee on Government Operations and Border Management, focused his questions on failed immigration policies and a lack of transparency.
Following the release of another bombshell report on the chaos at the southern border and how completely mismanaged the asylum process is, Lankford sent a letter to Department of Secretary Mayorkas asking for more information about the Notice to Report (NTR) and Parole processes that the agency is using to release illegal border crossers at the southern border.
After numerous staff and direct conversations about the matter, Lankford sent a letter to Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to on his concerns about efforts to re-implement the Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) program, known as the “Remain in Mexico” policy for asylum seekers. Lankford has repeatedly asked for information and raised significant questions about whether DHS is following the District Court’s order to resume the program in “good faith.”
“There’s a couple big challenges in this. One is, the numbers just came in for October. It’s the third-highest number in recorded history so while those things were implemented, the numbers continue to accelerate. This goes back to the estimates that when Title 42 goes away, there was an expectation from Intel to be able to say these numbers were going to surge even greater. You built a Venezuelan policy on trying to be able to deter Venezuelans based on Title 42. that just went away, and so what we’re trying to figure out is what is the plan. Because the plan you just articulated has led to the third-highest number for any single month in history,” said Lankford.