The border is a national security issue. Let’s treat it like one

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President Joe Biden apparently has no shame when it comes to border security. Illegal immigration is on the rise, and fentanyl is killing more Americans. Our enemies exploit our porous southern border to funnel criminals and even suspected terrorists into our country. But the president is asleep at the wheel.

Consider, for example, Biden’s treatment of Trump-era border wall materials. Instead of using high-quality taxpayer-purchased steel panels to build the wall, the president is paying millions of dollars to rent storage space for the wall. He is so hostile to border security that he would rather spend money keeping construction paused than repairing or expanding existing barriers.

Information I have discovered reveals that his administration has begun auctioning off supplies for $1. In one example, border materials purchased by the federal government for $4.4 million were sold for just $156,000.

Migrant encounters in 2023 break records

More than $255 million in supplies is still missing. Unfortunately, this is another example of the president neglecting his duties. Congress must intervene for him to relinquish his role as leader. Fortunately, Republicans in Congress are focused on passing legislation that treats the border like a national security crisis.

An illegal immigrant sneaks through a hole in the U.S.-Mexico border wall in El Paso, Texas, Dec. 19, 2022. (Patrick T. Fallon/AFP via Getty Images)

As the top Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, I led my colleagues in passing this year’s defense bill in the Senate. In it, we were able to successfully include some measures that strengthen our position on the border.

One bill, called the FINISH IT Act, would restart construction of former President Donald Trump’s border wall. The legislation would force the current administration to use existing border panels or sell them to states that can build their own walls. Border states understand the dangers of this catastrophe, which the president is willfully ignoring.

Notably, Senate Republicans passed this provision in broad bipartisan, Democratic-led committees and in the full Senate. It’s not difficult to understand why. Under this administration, every state is feeling the effects of the border crisis. Democratic politicians can no longer ignore this.

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The FINISH IT Act is just the beginning of our national defense law’s border security measures. Some target dangerous cartels.

One provision is to establish a pilot program to bring world-class U.S. military training to Mexican security forces. This will strengthen bilateral cooperation against common threats, including cartels.

Another provision would take the fight against cartels in cyberspace, and another would strengthen coordination between defense, intelligence and homeland security officials. These proposals would bring America’s technological and logistical tools into the fight by targeting the jobs we can do across our borders.


This crisis is a self-inflicted wound for Biden, but Republicans in Congress are successfully advancing solutions. This fall, the House and Senate will work together to send the defense bill to the president’s desk.

There will be many disagreements, and it is expected to face opposition from Congressional Democrats. Thankfully, the Senate-passed NDAA puts Republicans in a better negotiating position. We must not miss this opportunity to strengthen our national security by strengthening border security.

Click here to read more from Sen.roger wicker

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