Democratic lawmakers tour border facilities, say long-term solution needed

Migrant Centers

EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — On Monday, Delaware Sen. Tom Carper led a Democratic congressional delegation to El Paso to tour a facility housing unaccompanied migrant children.

Carper was joined by Rep. Norma Torres, D-California; Rep. Lou Correa, D-California; and Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colorado. Congresswoman Veronica Escobar of El Paso joined the delegation to tour U.S Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) sites that are housing unaccompanied migrant children.

The delegation was also expected to hear from government officials about the steps that the Biden administration is taking to properly care for unaccompanied migrant children, most of whom are coming from the Northern Triangle countries of El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.

On Tuesday, the delegation will be meeting with the U.S. Border Patrol to tour some sites and will take part in a series of briefings on how the administration is addressing the Migrant Protection Protocols wind-down process of asylum-seekers who were sent to remain in Mexico awaiting their asylum cases.

Escobar held a news conference about their tour. While congressional members hardly touched on what they saw at the facilities, they said they were focusing on long-term solutions and getting to the root cause of the issues in some of the migrants’ home countries.

“What I found today is a situation that is getting better better at the border, you don’t see family separation, better conditions for the children,” Correa said. “Today, I interviewed children in Spanish, in their own language and I asked them, why did you come here, number one, ‘I cant study at home, MS13 gangs will not let me live,'” Correa said.

The lawmakers said they wanted to take back solutions to D.C.

“Help hold us accountable by asking us what the solutions are, the solutions laid out by the senator,” Escobar said.

Carper laid out their plans, saying they need to have somebody in charge of bringing Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador to better economic environments and hold leadership accountable in those countries.

A recent poll by the AP-NORC found that, overall, 40% of Americans disapprove of Biden’s handling of children reaching the nation’s southern border without their parents, compared with just 24% who approve. Thirty-five percent don’t have an opinion either way.

You can watch the livestream of the news conference on this page at that time.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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