The Biden administration will send 1,500 active-duty troops to the southern border amid fears of a surge of migrants Title 42 restrictions are set to expire next week.
Following a request from the Department of Homeland Security, the Defense Department will add 1,500 military personnel for 90 days at the southern border to help the 2,500 military personnel currently providing support.
“DoD personnel will be performing non-law enforcement duties such as ground-based detection and monitoring, data entry, and warehouse support,” DHS said. “DoD personnel have never, and will not, perform law enforcement activities or interact with migrants or other individuals in DHS custody. This support will free up DHS law enforcement personnel to perform their critical law enforcement missions.”
“While this request is for 90 days, DoD has supported DHS on the border every year since 2006,” DHS said.
Fox News was the first to report the administration was considering sending troops. The troops would not use force or make arrests, but they would support border patrol as needed.
Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX) expressed skepticism when he was asked about the news.
“They may help around the margins, but this is gonna get a lot worse before it gets better,” Cornyn said to reporters.
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas called on Congress to fix what he called the “broken immigration system” in an interview with NBC’s “Meet The Press”.
“So I just want to be clear that we are working within significant constraints,” he said. “We need people, we need technology, we need facilities, we need transportation resources, all of the elements of addressing the needs of a large population of people arriving irregularly at our southern border.”
“I look at their needs. I try to fulfill their needs. We go to Congress and seek support,” he added.
More than 5,000 troops were sent to the border during the Trump administration.