Vice Pres. Pence urged Congress to pass immigration reforms that will close "loopholes" in current immigration law yesterday during an address to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection Employees in Imperial, California.
Pence pointed to the current "caravan" as an example of how "lax immigration laws" have "emboldened" people to attempt illegal entry into the U.S. and incentivized cartels, open borders advocates, and human smugglers to exploit them. He went on to say that while increased security on the southern border is important, Congress alone has the power to prevent future border surges by making reforms to close loopholes in current immigration law.
But as we all know -- and you better than me -- it's not just about building the wall. The truth is our immigration laws today are ineffective, and they invite inhumane results. As the President said earlier today in the Oval Office, we call on the Congress to close deadly immigration loopholes that are exploited by terrorists, traffickers, and criminals. And we do so again today.
"Whether it be the catch-and-release program or asylum policies that don't require people to stay in the first safe country in which they arrive, we're calling on Congress to work with us to bring about change. And it's change that recognizes the hardship that is placed not just on the American people, but by those who by virtue of these lax immigration laws are emboldened to make a long and dangerous journey to come to the American border. The truth is these laws create an incentive for vulnerable families, and those who would exploit them, to make that long journey up the peninsula.
"But let me make you a promise: Under this President, this administration, we will not rest until Congress passes legislation that will modernize our immigration laws and remove the message and the incentive of people to the south to try to enter our country by any means. (Applause.)
"That means cracking down on catch-and-release. It means ending chain migration and the visa lottery. It means cracking down on sanctuary cities and closing those dangerous loopholes. And it also means fully funding that border wall system so that all of you have the resources that you need to protect our families and go home safe to yours."
For more on this story, see whitehouse.gov.