|For Immediate Release
January 31, 2011
CONTACT: Jessica Baker, (202) 225-3951
Smith Response to Secretary Napolitano’s University of Texas Address
Washington, D.C. — Today, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano spoke at the University of Texas El Paso regarding the state of America’s homeland security. House Judiciary Committee Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas) issued the following statement in response to Secretary Napolitano’s comments.
Chairman Smith: “Securing the border is a two-fold approach: robust interior enforcement and beefed-up border security.
“The border is never going to be secure until we turn off the jobs magnet. While the Administration boasts there have been fewer illegal immigrants crossing the border in recent years, the fact remains that seven million illegal immigrants currently work in the United States. Although increased interior enforcement could open up jobs for millions of unemployed Americans, the current Administration has all but abandoned worksite enforcement activities. That means it is easier for illegal workers to get and keep jobs in the U.S.
“Americans and legal workers should not have to compete with illegal immigrants for scarce jobs. We should increase effective and proven worksite enforcement activities and also expand E-Verify. This would turn off the jobs magnet and reduce the flow of illegal immigrants across the border.
“The Administration also needs to strengthen border security. Although the Administration deployed 1,200 National Guard troops to the Southwest border, this is well below the amount requested by Border States. These troops will also be redeployed this summer. With bullets from Mexico crossing into El Paso just two weeks ago, now is not the time to draw down border security efforts. Instead, the Administration should fully honor the Border States’ request for even more troops.”