The Obama Administration admitted on Thursday that it resisted efforts by the Department of Homeland Security to create a way to measure border security because it was concerned the measurement would be used to block immigration reform that provides an amnesty to the nation's 11-19 million illegal aliens. The news came after a House Committee hearing on Wednesday where DHS officials said they failed to create a measurement system after telling Congress that it would two years ago.
In contrast to the Administration's thinking, both Republican and Democrat lawmakers told Mark Borkowski, a senior DHS official who testified before Congress on Wednesday, that they didn't want the Department to be the reason why immigration reform fails.
"We do not want the Department of Homeland Security to be the stumbling block to comprehensive immigration reform for this country,” said Rep. Candice Miller (R-Mich.), who also serves as the Chairwoman for the House Border Security Subcommittee. "[The inaction] could be a component of our failure to pass something I think is very important for our country."
Even pro-amnesty supporter Rep. Sheila Jackson-Lee was surprised by the Administration's decision.
"I would say to the department, you've got to get in the game," she said.
In 2010, the Governmental Accountability Office determined that the Department of Homeland Security had less than 50% "operational control" of the border. DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano said "operational control" didn't give an accurate description of how secure the border truly is and that the Department would come up with another way to measure border security. That led to Borkowski's admission on Wednesday.
A group of eight bipartisan Senators that are working on an amnesty bill listed in their principles that a "path to citizenship" would not be offered for illegal aliens until the border was deemed secure. Although, one Gang Member, Sen. Chuck Schumer, has said that border security will not delay a "path to citizenship."
"We need to have a measurement," Gang Member and Sen. John McCain said last week. "We need to assure the American people that we have effective control of the border and we have made advances to achieve that. I need to have something to assure people they are not going to live in fear."
For more information, see the New York Times.