(USA Features) Dozens of Republican governors are seeking a meeting with President Joe Biden to discuss the worsening border crisis as the administration begins repatriating thousands of Haitians who had gathered under and near a bridge in Del Rio Texas over the past week.
“Due to the emergent crisis, we respectfully request a meeting as soon as your schedule allows within 15 days,” 26 members of the Republican Governors Association wrote in a letter addressed to Biden on Monday.
“As chief executives of our states, we request a meeting with you at the White House to bring an end to the national security crisis created by eight months of unenforced borders,” they added.
Every GOP governor in the country signed the letter with one lone exception, Republican Gov. Phil Scott of Vermont.
In the letter, the governors said that the border crisis is affecting their states too, not just those sharing a boundary with Mexico.
“The months-long surge in illegal crossings has instigated an international humanitarian crisis, spurred a spike in international criminal activity, and opened the floodgates to human traffickers and drug smugglers endangering public health and safety in our states,” the RGA letter began.
“A crisis that began at our southern border now extends beyond to every state and requires immediate action before the situation worsens,” it adds.
Border apprehensions have surged almost 500% since last year, totaling 1.3 million people, which is “more people than the populations of nine U.S. states,” the governors noted.
“Despite the lack of federal action to reverse the crisis, many states have stepped up and committed unprecedented resources to support the security of our national border,” the letter read.
“We have heard directly from our constituents about the damage this crisis has caused in our states, and it is our duty as elected officials to act swiftly to protect our communities, as it is yours.”
Securing the border and protecting the sovereignty of the country is ultimately the responsibility of the federal government and the president, they added.
“While governors are doing what we can, our Constitution requires that the president must faithfully execute the immigration laws passed by Congress,” the letter said.
“Not only has the federal government created a crisis, it has left our states to deal with challenges that only the federal government has a duty to solve,” the governors noted.
“We must end the current crisis and return to border operations that respect the laws of our land and the lives of all people, including those in our states looking to the federal government to enforce and protect our nation’s borders.”