United States Senators led by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) provided the public with an update about the ongoing crisis at the southern border. They laid the blame for the unprecedented humanitarian crisis squarely at the feet of President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.

“We are seeing the highest rate of illegal immigration in 21 years. This is a human catastrophe and disaster, and Texas is paying the price,” Cruz said. “It is Joe Biden and Kamala Harris who refused to enforce the law, those are decisions they made literally the first day in office.”

Cruz, along with other U.S. Senators, noted that the Biden administration made three decisions relating to enforcing the border. The administration stopped construction of the border wall, reinstituted a “catch and release” program, and ended the international Remain in Mexico policy negotiated by the previous administration.

Cruz cited a Washington Times article reporting that catch and release numbers for August 2021 were 430,000% higher than August 2020. The Department of Homeland Security anticipates approximately 2.3 million illegal immigrants crossing into the United States this year.

Sen. Ernst (R-IA) said that the situation has become so dire that it affects the entire nation and turns every state into a border state while discussing the tremendous numbers of immigrants crossing into the U.S. illegally.

“2.3 million, put that into perspective, folks. There are 10 states in the United States that do not have a population of 2.3 million,” Ernst said. “The reality, because of President Biden’s failed policies on the southern border, is that every state is now a border state. All of the issues that are affecting Texas, those issues are now facing every other state in our Union.”

Republicans pointed out that the lack of enforcement at the border creates more significant problems in managing the global pandemic.

As numbers of daily cases and deaths have started to recede in places like Texas, DHS and Border Patrol have no choice but to release immigrants into Texas communities. Many thousands are untested for Covid, while at least one-third refuse to get vaccinated. Estimates indicate that somewhere between 20 and 25 percent of immigrants are infected with the virus.

Sen. Roger Marshall (R-KS), a physician who has participated in missionary healthcare efforts in Haiti and South America, says that there are even greater potential risks by introducing infectious diseases brought by immigrants to the United States. Marshall noted that immigrants from many less developed countries carry tuberculosis, polio, and parasites that have largely been eradicated in the U.S.

“I want to do everything we can to show compassion, but at the same time, I was sent here to protect our families from these infectious diseases,” Marshall said. “America knows that we have a humanitarian crisis on the border, and America knows Joe Biden could fix it.”

“Setting your budget, setting your spending priorities, as a nation shows what you believe in and what you think is important. As we look at Homeland Security bills, number one, no wall funding,” Capito said. “No increase in the Department of Homeland Security and in the DOD Budget, so what does this tell you? This tells you that it’s not a priority.”

Capito pointed out that taxpayers are paying as much as $5 million per day to pay contractors not to build the wall while key sections lay unused in the desert and sections of fences and gates are not secure, allowing people to walk across the border with no fear of consequences.

The re-introduction of “catch and release” policies has led to several stories about Border Patrol and DHS simply dropping illegal immigrants at bus stops and gas stations in Southern Texas without proper vetting. Republicans claim that this policy is responsible for the international perception that the southern border is unmanned and open to anyone who desires to come through, leading to the most significant increases in illegal immigration in 21 years.

“I have heard for months people in the press saying this is the highest number of people that are illegally crossing the border in the last 21 years,” Sen. James Lankford (R-OK) said. “That is about to be updated because when the numbers come in in the next couple of days for September, we will exceed the number from 21 years ago.”

The group of senators pointed out that many Democrats who represent areas along the southern border have begun calling on the Biden administration to address the problems, but are getting little or no help, even going as far as to claim the administration is deliberately dragging its feet on instituting policies that a Federal Court has ordered enforced.

Cruz called out the White House for claiming there is no solution to the problem.

“They are not telling you the truth because the problem was largely fixed last year, and they broke it. On Day One, Joe Biden ripped up that international agreement, and a Federal Court has now ruled that ripping up that international agreement was illegal,” Cruz said. “I have talked to Border Patrol officials who have said that the Biden administration is slow-walking compliance with that order.”

Republicans called on the Biden administration to show leadership in handling the crisis by addressing sex trafficking of children, drug trafficking that leads to widespread crime, and the spread of infectious diseases that threaten to overwhelm already precarious healthcare providers.

“The way to fix it is to reverse the political decisions they made on January 20th of this year,” Cruz said. “They could do it and fix it; it is only partisan politics that prevents them from doing something.”