CBP seized drugs and weapons valued at nearly $440 million at Texas ports of entry, no thanks to GOP

Cocaine seizures by U.S. officials at ports of entry rose nearly 20% compared to the previous fiscal year, official government data reveals. Border Report said that Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers seized more than five tons of cocaine at ports of entry along southern Texas. “That was a 19% increase from Fiscal Year 2021,” the report said. What’s all that about so-called “open borders” again?

RELATED STORY: Huge amounts of drugs have been seized at the border and Republicans are very mad about it

Officials also seized large amounts of other illegal drugs, including more than 30,000 pounds of meth, and hundreds of pounds of fentanyl and heroin. Additionally, hundreds of guns and nearly 80,000 rounds of ammunition were also confiscated. All in all, U.S. border officials estimated the street value of all the seizures coming to nearly $440 million.

“As nonessential traffic resumed early in Fiscal Year 2022, overall workload volumes returned to normal but CBP officers continued to experience the ongoing trend of hard narcotics, particularly cocaine and significant gains in encounters of individuals without valid entry documents,” Eugene Crawford, CBP Acting Director of Field Operations for the Laredo Field Office, told Border Report.

In a separate release, CBP said that officers found cocaine valuing more than $154,000 hidden in a 2015 Ford during a crossing at the Brownsville and Matamoros International Bridge.

“The seizure took place on Saturday, Jan. 7, at the Brownsville and Matamoros International Bridge when a 22-year-old female United States citizen who resides in Brownsville, Texas, attempted entry into the United States driving a 2015 Ford,” the release said. The packages were found when the driver was sent to a secondary inspection area, where officials found the stash with “the aid of a non-intrusive inspection system” and a canine unit. Good doggie.

Please also note that the driver was a U.S. citizen. While available data has shown that its overwhelmingly U.S. citizens who’ve been caught with drugs at U.S. ports of entry, Republicans have sought to use this to further their nativist agenda, like RNC chair Ronna Romney McDaniel basically accusing migrants of personally stashing “rainbow fentanyl” into children’s mouths. Unfortunately, polling has shown way too many Americans have been successfully duped by these lies.

By the way, did anyone notice how quickly these outlandish rainbow fentanyl fears faded away after the midterm elections? I guess that means it’s fixed? Thanks, President Biden!

But Republicans have also sought to use the very serious issue of fentanyl use to further their retribution agenda. Among the grievances listed in the ridiculous impeachment resolution filed by a House Republican against Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Sec. Alejandro Mayorkas cites in part fentanyl seizures at the southern border as justification. They want him out for stopping the drugs from coming in, apparently.

Republicans have done everything possible to create havoc at the border, in reality. That includes derailing an immigration compromise in the last session of Congress and voting against hundreds of millions of dollars in land ports of entry modernization. “Fentanyl seizures have increased under the Biden administration, which made cracking down on drug traffickers a major component of the White House plan,” immigrant rights advocacy group America’s Voice has said.

Last August, border officials seized more than $4 million dollars worth of fentanyl in one bust. That’s anything but “open borders.” Maybe all the Republican anger about these massive seizures is because it might be making the alleged partying less fun? Hmm.


Most arrested for drug smuggling are U.S. citizens. Don't count on GOP to stop attacking migrants

House Republican files impeachment resolution against Mayorkas, and it’s as silly as you think

Part of Kevin McCarthy’s corrupt bargaining in his 15-round bid for the House speakership included supporting ultra-right demands for impeachment proceedings against Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas. While McCarthy allegedly held no public stance on proceedings earlier in the year, he was leading the threat himself right after the election because he didn’t have the votes to win the gavel.

Part of his corrupt bargaining showed its face this week when a Texas lawmaker on the first day of the new Congress filed articles of impeachment against the secretary. The silly political document claims Mayorkas should be removed “for high crimes and misdemeanors,” and cites in part fentanyl seizures at the southern border as justification. Wait, they want him out for stopping the drugs from coming in? Republicans have been very weirdly mad about successful seizures. Now they want to impeach the guy over it.

RELATED STORY: Jordan is pushing for Mayorkas impeachment based on ridiculous lie that 'we no longer have a border'

But there’s more, folks. Pat Fallon, a forced birth and anti-LGBTQ Republican from Texas’ 4th Congressional District, also cites the Biden administration’s decision to terminate the previous administration’s Remain in Mexico policy. Despite the right-wing Supreme Court of the United States ruling that the administration acted perfectly lawfully in terminating the anti-asylum policy, Fallon thinks Mayorkas should be impeached for it.

Fallon further cites the Biden administration’s attempt to terminate the previous administration’s Title 42 order, calling it “a critical tool enabling the U.S. Customs and Border Protection to quickly expel illegal aliens.” But remember the public health order’s now-delayed Dec. 21 lift date followed a court ruling that found the scientifically debunked policy violated federal law. So is the GOP stance to now violate court orders?

When asked about impeachment articles, Mayorkas was reportedly “not fazed,” one report said. Even if it is successful, it’ll go nowhere in the U.S. Senate.

“I've got a lot of work to do, and we’re going to do it,” Mayorkas told ABC News. The official said the administration is “dealing within a broken immigration system that Congress has failed to repair for decades.” Fact check: True. Not only did Republicans like Texas Sen. John Cornyn help derail a bipartisan immigration framework at the end of the last Congress, McCarthy has promised no humane immigration legislation will get his signature.

“Number two, the world is dealing with the greatest displacement of people since World War II in the Western Hemisphere,” Mayorkas continued to ABC News. “Our entire hemisphere is gripped with a migration challenge.” New parole opportunities for migrants from regions including Venezuela and Haiti are a step forward in beginning to address these challenges; policies like Title 42 are not, considering it’s only increased apprehensions and forced vulnerable people back to danger.

If you want to see the depths of the GOP’s lack of seriousness, take a look at another Texas Republican: Rep. Chip Roy claimed the administration isn’t doing enough to secure the border, so he’s got a plan of his own: Defund DHS. During a floor speech, Roy urged his colleagues “to stop funding a Department of Homeland Security that refuses to secure the border of the United States.” He promised that the newly empowered Republicans would do that “this year.” You mean defund abusive immigration enforcement agencies? Defund child kidnappers, shooters of unarmed migrants, and the agents who abuse Black migrants before deporting themLet’s fucking go. 

Back to the impeachment resolution, one more thing to mention regarding fentanyl seizures is that Republicans have sought to turn this into a political issue against Democrats when its Republicans who voted against hundreds of millions of dollars in funding for the construction and modernization of land ports of entry.

“Improvements like ‘multi-energy portal’ screening technology would increase the ability for illicit narcotics seizures at the nation’s borders without significantly impacting the massive amount of legal trade that runs through those same POEs,” immigration reform advocacy group America’s Voice said last year. But Republicans voted against that.

NBC News reported that the articles against Mayorkas “have been referred to the Judiciary Committee, chaired by Jim Jordan, R-Ohio.” Jordan, a former wrestling coach who allegedly looked the other way when young students were being sexually abused at Ohio State University, has previously supported an impeachment effort, falsely claiming “we no longer have a border.” Do Republicans believe their own bullshit? It doesn’t really matter as long as they can get others to believe it.


Testimony confirms Title 42 was never about public health, it was about deporting asylum-seekers

LGBTQ advocates remind us that Stephen Miller was scheming policy 'long before' COVID 'even existed'

Texas Republican wants to secure the border by defunding department tasked with border security

Chief justice temporarily blocks Title 42 end, indicates further action from court could come soon

Chief Justice John Roberts on Monday temporarily halted the Biden administration’s planned lifting of the anti-asylum Title 42 order, granting a so-called emergency appeal from a slate of Republican attorneys general. “So-called emergency appeal,” because the appeals court panel that had last week denied the GOP request noted that the group of 19 attorneys general had waited too long to file their request.

The Biden administration had planned to lift the debunked public health order that’s used the pandemic as an excuse to quickly deport asylum-seekers in violation of their rights Tuesday evening, following a lower court order. Roberts instructed the administration to respond by this evening, indicating more action could be imminent. Legal expert Mark Joseph Stern noted that Roberts’ administrative stay “does not hint at the eventual outcome.”

RELATED STORY: D.C. Court of Appeals panel rejects GOP effort trying to keep anti-asylum policy in place

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Republicans have simultaneously claimed that the Biden administration has an “open borders” policy while insisting that the Title 42 policy—which was implemented against the advice of public health experts by noted white supremacist Stephen Miller and Mike Pence at the beginning of the pandemic in March 2020—must stay in place indefinitely. They have also insisted this public health order remain as they’ve consistently challenged other pandemic-related orders by the administration.

“The Biden administration, for its part, has insisted it is prepared to lift Title 42, saying the restoration of regular immigration procedures, such expedited deportations, will allow the U.S. to gradually reduce migrant arrivals and the high rate of repeat crossings recorded during the pandemic,” CBS News reported.

That last part is crucial: Title 42 in fact led to an increase in apprehensions, because desperate people blocked from their asylum rights and expelled have had no choice but to try again. It’s a failed policy, and its lifting would put our country back on the side of respecting U.S. and international asylum law. In a statement, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said that as required by Roberts’ order, “the Title 42 public health order will remain in effect at this time and individuals who attempt to enter the United States unlawfully will continue to be expelled to Mexico.”

“While this stage of the litigation proceeds, we will continue our preparations to manage the border in a safe, orderly, and humane way when the Title 42 public health order lifts,” Mayorkas continued. “We urge Congress to use this time to provide the funds we have requested for border security and management and advance the comprehensive immigration measures President Biden proposed on his first day in office.”

House Republicans set to take power in the next Congress have indicated they’re serious about leading on immigration policy … by pushing a harebrained idea to impeach Mayorkas. Over what crimes? They haven’t figured that part out yet.

Vice President Kamala Harris similarly noted the need for lawmakers to lead on comprehensive immigration measures, and she called out for Republicans for failing to come to the table. They obsess on the issue of immigration only when it’s election season (my words, not hers). For example, a proposed framework that would have passed permanent relief for young immigrants in exchange for harsh border measures recently failed, derailed by Republicans’ “border first” excuses even though there was border stuff in there.

"I think that there is so much that needs to happen to address the issue," the vice president told NPR. "And sadly, what we have seen in particular, I am sad to say, from Republicans in Congress is an unwillingness to engage in any meaningful reform that could actually fix a lot of what we are witnessing.”


Biden admin set to lift anti-asylum Title 42 order next week, but GOP appeal may now delay that

'Arbitrary and capricious': In victory for asylum-seekers, judge orders end to Miller pandemic order

Testimony confirms Title 42 was never about public health, it was about deporting asylum-seekers

Lame duck immigration framework from bipartisan senators is reportedly dead

The immigration framework proposed by two bipartisan lawmakers that would have passed permanent relief for young undocumented immigrants in exchange for harsh border measures has reportedly failed. 

Thom Tillis and Kyrsten Sinema “did not strike a deal that would have been able to secure the necessary 60 votes in the evenly divided Senate during the lame-duck session,” congressional officials told CBS News. John Cornyn “and other members of GOP leadership said there was scant Republican support for the plan,” CNN’s Priscilla Alvarez tweeted Wednesday.

RELATED STORY: Bipartisan senators drafting immigration 'framework' that would protect DACA recipients

The termination of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program through right-wing courts is not a matter of if, its a matter of when, and passage of a deal during the lame duck represented the last chance to pass some sort of relief before an anti-immigrant Texas judge issues his decision. Kevin McCarthy has already promised he’ll pass no humane relief, as part of his campaigning to become speaker. That includes a corrupt bargain targeting Department of Homeland Security Sec. Alejandro Mayorkas for impeachment.

The immigration proposal came as young immigrants (as well as the farmworkers who feed America) rallied for legislative action before the current congressional term ends in January, and was a sweet-and-sour deal attempting to garner the 10 Republicans needed to overcome the Jim Crow filibuster.

The sweet: Relief for DACA recipients, who for five years have been watching the program be attacked by Republicans, both at the federal government level and in the courts. The sour: Harsh border enforcement measures, including an extension of Stephen Miller’s anti-asylum Title 42 policy for at least another year. CNN had also reported increased border security funding, anywhere from $25 billion to $40 billion, on top of the billions that border agencies already get. But apparently, none of that was enough to convince 10 members of the GOP caucus, according to Cornyn.

Cornyn, since we’re already discussing him, once made a laughable claim in a campaign ad that he’s supported legalization for undocumented immigrant youth, and that he’s actually been fighting for them behind the scenes. But given a real, high-stakes chance to do something about, like right now during the lame duck session and as an end to the DACA program is inevitable, he's done nothing but throw cold water on the proposal.

It’s not hard to boil all this down to Republicans just not wanting to do anything about DACA recipients—even when presented with the kind of border measures they love—because they want to keep using immigrants as a political tool.

”The bill was far from ideal, but probably the best shot at heading off the crisis coming when the Supreme Court pulls the plug on DACA next June,” tweeted immigration attorney Greg Siskind. Tyler Moran, a former official with both the Obama and Biden administrations, wrote in a tweet that all Republicans “do is complain about the border—but when presented with an opportunity to provide a ton of resources for asylum, fentanyl detection & Border Patrol in exchange for DREAM, they balk. They want to perpetuate chaos, yet they are never held accountable.”

So is it over for this lame-duck session when it comes to immigration policy? There’s been a push to aid our Afghan allies evacuated to the U.S. by passing the Afghan Adjustment Act through the omnibus package. That’s something that needs to happen, because it’s owed to them. Some advocates are pushing for immigration relief via a registry update, and also through the omnibus. The hopeful part of me says it’s not over until it’s over. But the remaining options, and time, are dwindling.

“What else do we need to do,” tweeted DACA recipient Erika Andiola, a constituent of Sinema’s and a proponent of the passage of permanent relief during the lame-duck session. “How else can we get this country to accept us. To give us a chance to fully belong. Almost 15 years sacrificing so much. Fighting so hard. I’m tired. So tired.”


House caucus chairs say lawmakers 'must not let this year end' without protecting DACA recipients

DACA recipients, leading Democrats push for legalization deal in lame duck session

Farmworkers from nearly a dozen states are rallying in D.C. to urge action during lame duck session

Now faced with doing actual work, no House Republican wants to chair border funding committee

Republican Kevin McCarthy and others in his caucus have carried out campaign stunt after campaign stunt at the southern border, at times happening when the wannabe speaker is desperately attempting to distract from certain scandals that also pertain to him. What a coincidence.

But now Republicans have won slim control of the U.S. House, and they’re apparently realizing that, shit, the usual theatrics they used when in the minority might have to be replaced with some actual work. I mean, what else explains why none of them want to chair the committee tasked with border-related issues?

“The House GOP is still searching for a senior lawmaker willing to head the politically combustible panel that oversees funding for the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies for the next Congress, according to multiple people familiar with the discussions,” Politico reports this week. Typically, you’d think that the top minority member of a committee would be absolutely chomping at the bit following a change in power, but the outlet said that the committee’s senior Republican, Tennessee’s Chuck Fleischmann, has his eyes set elsewhere.

“And Rep. John Carter (R-Texas), who previously led the committee, said: ‘I don’t know who wants it,’” the report continued.

Politico framed the panel as one that has faced “gridlock,” but that’s because it has required working with committee members from the opposing party. It requires figuring out numbers for operations and personnel and studying departments and agencies and actual work that isn’t filming a video amid the shrubbery of the Rio Grande like some nature special. The committee’s current chair, California’s Lucille Roybal-Allard, is a respected lawmaker who has led on meaningful immigration-related legislation.

Shitting on the opposing party’s administration policies, particularly on issues as complex and nuanced as immigration, is easy enough when you’re in the minority. You get to complain and point fingers and do it all on some right-wing program or to racist propaganda outlets. But when you control the committees, it’s a lot harder to try to blame the other party for issues that you railed on as a campaign strategy, because that’s all immigration is to Republicans. A fucking campaign strategy.

“Here the clearest sign on how little Republicans care about the border—other than using it as a political issue to divide America: The House GOP can’t find anyone to chair the committee that writes the budget for the border,” tweeted Sen. Chris Murphy, who chairs the upper chamber’s version of the committee. Somebody is going to have to head the committee in the end. Politico reports that the next Republican in line, Steven Palazzo, is also out of the running because he won’t be in Congress anymore after losing his primary. After him are Florida’s John Rutherford, who defended the previous administration’s kidnapping at the border, and Iowa’s Ashley Hinson, who once touted federal funding she had earlier labeled as “socialist.”

House Republicans are eager to begin working for the American people in January (did you set your sarcasm meter to 10 already?), focusing on priorities like Hunter Biden’s laptop, dragging Twitter employees in for questioning about the president’s son, and likely seeking an impeachment inquiry against the president himself. Over what, they haven’t exactly figured out yet. The lack of interest in this top committee continues to show they have absolutely no interest in governing. What a waste these next two years are going to be.

Well, that was an awesome way to finish out the 2022 election cycle! Co-hosts David Nir and David Beard revel in Raphael Warnock's runoff victory on this week's episode of The Downballot and take a deep dive into how it all came together. The Davids dig into the turnout shift between the first and second rounds of voting, what the demographic trends in the metro Atlanta area mean for Republicans, and why Democrats can trace their recent success in Georgia back to a race they lost: the famous Jon Ossoff special election in 2017.

We're also joined by one of our very favorite people, Daily Kos Elections alum Matt Booker, who shares his thoughts on the midterms and tells us about his work these days as a pollster. Matt explains some of the key ways in which private polling differs from public data; how the client surveys he was privy to did not foretell a red wave; and the mechanics of how researchers put together focus groups. Matt also reminisces about his time at "DKE University" and how his experience with us prepared him for the broader world of politics.

House members urge federal intervention into Greg Abbott’s white nationalist declaration

Is Greg Abbott looking to the 2024 presidential race? Quite possibly, and groan, because after trouncing Beto O’Rourke in the 2022 election by nearly one million votes, the right-wing governor is continuing his string of nativist stunts, this week officially declaring supposed powers that he claims allow him to take “unprecedented measures” to defend Texas “against an invasion.”

No one’s being invaded, and Abbott knows that. He’s instead signaling to the white nationalists who like to use this language. But just as importantly, some of the supposed powers that Abbott claims he has, like returning migrants to the border, are strictly the job of the federal government. A number of lawmakers from Texas say it's incumbent on the government to intervene.

RELATED STORY: D.C. attorney general says he's probing whether migrants bused to capital were tricked by GOP

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“As members of Congress representing the great state of Texas, we are deeply disturbed with recent comments made by the Governor of Texas suggesting he has invoked invasion authorities under the U.S. Constitution to justify the use of state resources to further militarize our southern border,” lawmakers led by former Trump impeachment manager Sylvia Garcia tell the Biden administration in a letter obtained by The Hill. They not only object to Abbott’s supposed authority, they object to his reckless, flame-throwing rhetoric.

“Legal authority aside, there is simply not an invasion happening at the border,” they continued. “Many of the immigrants arriving at our border are exercising their right to claim asylum and other forms of humanitarian relief. They are not waging war against the United States or Texas.”

It is sad that even has to be said, but Abbott has a history of signaling to violent white supremacists through his rhetoric. He knows damn well that “invasion” wording was used by the racist mass gunman who murdered Texans at a Walmart in 2019, yet he’s continued to echo that rhetoric as recently as this past summer. Greg Abbott knows exactly what he’s doing. He’s further endangering lives—even as racist mass shooters since El Paso have echoed that wording.

“Declaring an invasion under the U.S. Constitution is an incendiary and divisive idea that will certainly lead to unnecessary litigation and will encourage dangerous anti-immigrant sentiments,” lawmakers continued in their letter. “Put simply, this type of reckless stunt will only continue to put Latino communities at risk of greater violence.”

The Hill also reports that Abbott’s actions are again pissing off Mexican officials, who said in a statement that “implementation of migratory laws, border control and the negotiation of international agreements are exclusive authorities of the federal government.” Abbott already faced ire from the Mexican government during his short-lived, massively expensive flop of a stunt forcing commercial vehicles to undergo redundant checks that actually didn’t do much of any checking. Facing international blowback and massive financial losses, Abbott quickly ended the disastrous policy.

Abbott has continued his busing stunt using migrants as human props, expanding his scheme to Pennsylvania. Among those he sent to Philadelphia was a 10-year-old girl who reportedly arrived so sick with fever and dehydration that she had to be immediately hospitalized. But Greg Abbott doesn’t care.

“The Governor of Texas is taking a white nationalist conspiracy theory that has inspired multiple domestic terrorist attacks and making it official state policy by declaring migrants to be a literal invading force,” said Zachary Mueller, Political Director at America’s Voice. “In 2019, a Texas man murdered 23 people in El Paso, Texas, in an act of domestic terrorism, which he believed would stop the ‘Hispanic invasion.’ After three years and another terrorist attack in Buffalo, New York, inspired by ‘invasion’ paranoia, Gov. Abbott is fully embracing this deadly racist lie and giving it a governmental imprimatur.”


Greg Abbott signals to violent white supremacist extremists in latest anti-immigrant order

Republicans are refusing to stop using racist mass killers' 'invasion' rhetoric

Sick child bused by Greg Abbott needed hospitalization after arriving in Philadelphia, reports say

In likely final immigration rant as president, Trump worries about his wall being taken down

Donald Trump, set to be the first president to have been impeached twice, went to the U.S./Mexico border Tuesday to do exactly what we said he’d do. While there was of course a bunch of self-congratulation for the border fencing built with stolen U.S. taxpayer funds because Mexico never did end up paying for it, Trump ended his final border visit as president the same way he kicked off his racist campaign in 2015.

“President Trump traveled to the U.S.-Mexico border on Tuesday and recited a bunch of old claims about immigrants and crime that we’ve long rated false or misleading,” The Washington Post reported. “Our practice is not to award Pinocchios when we round up multiple claims, but Trump as usual butchered the facts with his spin about immigrants, ending his term as it began.” Immigrant rights advocacy group RAICES noted that networks didn’t broadcast his bullshit live, either.

Some racist lies uttered by Trump in Texas I’m not going to go into here because after five years I’m sick and tired of having to justify the humanity of immigrants following some disgusting speech he made somewhere. While I’m sure this man will remain a boil on the butt of humanity post Jan. 20, I hope this is the final time I ever have to address his racist remarks as president. If you want to read exactly what he said in Texas, here’s The Post’s roundup. 

We should however address some of his lies about policy, because this is damage that President-elect Biden can immediately begin to reverse after he takes office next week.

“One of the biggest loopholes we closed was asylum fraud under the old broken system,” Trump falsely claimed on Tuesday. “If you merely requested asylum, you were released into the country. The most ridiculous thing anyone’s ever seen. And we were taking in some people that you didn’t want to have in your country. We instituted a series of historic policy changes to shut down asylum fraud, and that’s what we did.”

“Wrong on multiple levels,” The Post corrected. Or as I immediately thought, bullshit, bullshit, bullshit.

What Trump has done is shut down the U.S. asylum system to just about everybody, through dangerous and unlawful policies like Migrant Protection Protocols, or Remain in Mexico, and the politically motivated Stephen Miller order using the novel coronavirus pandemic as an excuse to quickly expel thousands of asylum-seekers, including children.

“As of Jan 2020 (1 yr ago) @humanrights1st had tracked at least 816 public reports of murder, torture, rape, kidnapping, and other violent attacks against asylum-seekers and migrants returned to Mexico under MPP,” RAICES tweeted. “Trump's take: ‘MPP saved countless lives from crime.’” In shocking audio obtained by CNN last year, the Trump administration in fact admitted the policy was dangerous after having publicly defended it as having “successfully provided protections” to asylum seekers.

Parents forced to wait for their U.S. immigration court dates in Mexico under the policy have become so desperate, that they’ve been forced to send their children to the U.S. by themselves, resulting in another form of family separation. Among those parents has been Alexis Martinez, who recounted to NPR in late 2019 watching his children, 5-year-old Benjamin and 7-year-old Osiel, holding hands as they crossed into the U.S. alone. 

”All in all, today's appearance was a victory lap (if you can even call it that) of the only thing in his presidency Trump was able to accomplish: dismantle our immigration system as we know it,” RAICES continued. The organization noted that Trump spent time praising the out-of-control agents of Customs and Border Protection and Immigration and Customs Enforcement, something that “reeks of danger. These agencies were already vile & during the last 4 years the Trump admin fostered an already rampant racism & xenophobia within them.”

But in the end, Vox reports that Trump’s main concern wasn’t the lives he’s destroyed through his policies or the enduring damage policies like Remain in Mexico has created, but instead about his precious, stupid wall. “We can’t let the next administration even think about taking it down,” he said according to the report. President-elect Joe Biden has pledged to stop building when he takes office next week. He needs to knock the motherfucker down too.

Trump to end presidency the same way he kicked off run, by attacking immigrants

Soon-to-be-twice impeached Donald Trump is ending his white supremacist presidency the same way he started his campaign more than five years ago: racist, anti-immigrant fearmongering. Having basically gone into hiding after inciting a violent mob of seditionist supporters who ransacked the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to overturn the 2020 election results—and resulted in numerous deaths, including of a police officer—Trump is traveling to Texas on Tuesday to bluster about the border wall that Mexico never did end up paying for.

The Associated Press reports that missing from the visit will be unlawfully appointed acting DHS Sec. Chad Wolf, who resigned Monday. But following the D.C. attack (nice job securing the “homeland” there, Chad), elected officials, editorial boards, and border communities are demanding Trump stay away too. "Normally we would welcome a presidential visit to our state. Not now,” the American-Statesman Editorial Board wrote. “Not by a president who is unhinged and unrepentant for the violent mob he sent last week to the Capitol."

“The stated reason for Trump’s visit to Alamo is to tout his administration’s work on the border wall and immigration,” the American-Statesman Editorial Board continued. “Indeed, Trump is wrapping up his term on the same note that he launched his political career, stoking fear about immigrants and exaggerating his accomplishments.”

June 16, 2015, will always live in infamy as the day he launched his presidential campaign by descending the escalators at Trump Tower to call Mexican immigrants criminals and rapists. ”When Mexico sends its people, they’re not sending their best,” he said. “They’re not sending you. They’re not sending you. They’re sending people that have lots of problems, and they’re bringing those problems with us. They’re bringing drugs. They’re bringing crime. They’re rapists. And some, I assume, are good people.”

His comments were blatantly racist and disqualifying, but too many in the mainstream media were afraid to say so and instead merely labeled them “controversial.” Worse yet, others dismissed them as a joke. It wasn’t a joke or “controversial” to Mexicans and Mexican-Americans like me. He was talking about us. He talking about my parents and two older sisters, all born in Mexico. He was talking about me, the son of Mexican immigrants.

“Trump acts as if his legacy along the border will be construction of a ‘beautiful’ wall,” American-Statesman continued. “In truth, his legacy is one of destruction: Crying children pulled from their parents’ arms as part of his shocking family separation policy, with hundreds of kids still waiting to be reunited. Migrant kids dying in U.S. custody for lack of proper care. A shameful humanitarian crisis just south of the border as the U.S. turned its back on those who are lawfully seeking asylum. A degradation of America’s values and standing in the world.”

Now having incited a violent mob that my colleague David Neiwert writes was “intent on taking hostages and murdering them” and is now leading to an unprecedented second impeachment, Trump is returning to what he always goes to when desperate or in need of an ego boost: attacking immigrants (and doing it as likely his final trip in office).

“Rather than spend his last days in the Oval Office addressing the pressing Covid-19 pandemic and ensuring an orderly transition, Trump is doubling down on his xenophobic, white supremacist agenda,” Border Network for Human Rights (BNHR) executive director Fernando García said in a statement received by Daily Kos. Indeed, the City of Alamo said in a statement it hasn’t even been contacted about Trump’s visit.

“His presence at the borderland is a provocation, and an act of violence in and of itself,” García continued. “Border communities are calling for the dismantlement of the wall of shame, racism and white supremacy. The wall and all it represents have no place in our society, and Trump must be held accountable.”

President-elect Joe Biden’s victory and our wins in Georgia provide an opportunity to take both executive and legislative action to protect undocumented communities attacked by the outgoing administration. I hope Trump has the time of his wretched life at his precious wall Tuesday because Biden has also pledged to not build another foot of it—and because it was built using swindled funds and has caused “incalculable” harm in the borderlands, there’s a strong case for knocking the motherfucker down. The human costs of Trump’s racism, however, the fomenting of violence and the unleashing of white supremacist forces, will not be so easy to scale back. That’s the “legacy” he’s leaving us. 

“It is a presidency that has prioritized sowing division, undermining our institutions and norms, and working tirelessly to marginalize the ‘other,’” American Immigration Council policy counsel Aaron Reichlin-Melnick writes. “For Trump, there were no people more “other” than those who came to our border and asked for our help.” He writes that that to truly “defeat Trumpism, as a nation we must embrace a more humane approach toward those who are different from us, one that respects the law and our obligations to the most vulnerable.”

“The Biden administration can start by restoring humanitarian protection, and finally moving away from the deterrence-based mindsets of the past decades and create a truly welcoming process at the border,” Reichlin-Melnick continued.