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Katko Statement on IG Report on DHS COVID-19 Response Failure at Southern Border

September 15, 2021

Katko Statement on IG Report on DHS COVID-19 Response Failure at Southern Border

WASHINGTON, DC – Rep. John Katko (R-NY), Ranking Member of the House Committee on Homeland Security, released the following statement on a report released today by the DHS Office of Inspector General entitled, “DHS Needs to Enhance Its COVID-19 Response at the Southwest Border.”

“This report affirms what we have known for months: President Biden’s DHS is playing political games while creating a massive public health crisis at the southwest border. With a record 1.1 million illegal crossings this year, the Biden administration has willingly released thousands of migrants into American communities without a formal COVID-19 testing framework in place for those in CBP custody. President Biden’s open border policies and lax COVID-19 preventative measures have endangered the health and safety of the American people, the DHS workforce, support staff, and local communities—and now DHS’s independent watchdog has confirmed it. While migrants crossing illegally are given a free pass, American citizens traveling internationally are required to present a negative result. The double standard is astounding.

“Lastly, the findings that the Biden administration’s erosion of Title 42 has had a ‘significant negative impact in CBP’s COVID-19 mitigation measures’ are very troublesome. As powerful variants continue to spread around the world, I urge the administration to work with Homeland Security Republicans to right its wrongs and implement commonsense border security policies to manage the ongoing surge of migrants at the border and preserve pandemic recovery in the United States.”