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Rogers Statement at DHS Subpoena Markup

November 20, 2019

Rogers Statement at DHS Subpoena Markup

Top Homeland Security Republican Says: “the committee has a right to examine DHS policy documents so we can properly conduct oversight. But it’s important to remember our committee’s duty is also to legislate.”

WASHINGTON – Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Ala.), ranking member of the House Homeland Security Committee, delivered the following opening statement at a markup of a resolution to issue a subpoena to the Department of Homeland Security.

Mr. Chairman, I’d like to thank you for following committee rules and consulting with the minority on this subpoena. I also thank you for honoring your commitment to our members to hold a markup when issuing a subpoena. This is how we should do business.

I understand that you have made a number of document requests over the last few months. Since your letter in January, the Department has produced more than 5,000 pages of documents. Some of that production included internal memos and emails. Many other documents produced were already in the public domain.

I also understand that many of the documents you’ve requested have already been released to the Oversight Committee and the Judiciary Committee. I hope that with this narrower request, the Department will be more responsive.   

I agree with you that the Committee has a right to examine DHS policy documents so we can properly conduct oversight. But it’s important to remember our Committee’s duty is also to legislate.

Until this Congress acts to fix our broken immigration system, a pile of documents won’t fix anything.

I’ve spoken to Acting Secretary Wolf and believe he’ll make a good faith effort to comply with this subpoena, provided he’s given time to do so. This subpoena, which is much narrower than originally drafted, rightly focuses on policy documents and operational records.

I believe the documents produced will paint a picture of an emerging border crisis. The summer and fall of 2018 saw high volumes of illegal immigration, including the 10,000 person caravan. That surge paved the way for the full-blown crisis we saw earlier this year.

The Migrant Protection Protocols and enforcement policies put in place by DHS helped to stem the humanitarian crisis at the border. I look forward to reviewing these documents.