House Speaker John Boehner says that the White House’s policies are to blame for the influx of unaccompanied immigrant minors into the country and that the Obama administration should immediately deploy the National Guard to the nation’s southern border to deal with the crisis.
“The policies of your administration have directly resulted in the belief by these immigrants that once they reach U.S. soil, they will be able to stay here indefinitely,” Boehner wrote in a letter to President Barack Obama on Friday.
“It is our duty and obligation to enforce the laws of our country while protecting the most vulnerable and ensuring they are healthy and well protected,” he continued. “In that vein, your administration should immediately deploy the National Guard to our southern border.”
The Speaker also said that the State Department should start discussions with countries like Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras – the source of many of the migrants – to coordinate the return of the illegal entrants.
An unprecedented number of unaccompanied children – many fleeing violence in their home countries - have been apprehended at the border, prompting a scramble by authorities to house them and attempt to return them to their families.
Critics blame the administration’s 'deferred action' policy for immigrants brought to the United States illegally as children for the new influx of minors. The Obama administration notes that children arriving now are not eligible for the program and that they are placed into deportation proceedings when apprehended.
First published June 20 2014, 8:38 AM
Carrie Dann is a national political writer for NBCNews.com. She has worked for NBC and NBCNews.com since 2006. Dann writes about politics and Congress. Dann rejoined the web team after 18 months as a campaign reporter for NBC News, covering presidential and vice presidential candidates during the 2012 election. She also covered the 2007-2008 presidential campaign for NBC, including extensive reporting on the Iowa caucuses.
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Prior to her work at NBCNews.com, Dann was a staff reporter at CongressDaily, where she covered lobbying and government reform.
A Virginia native, she now lives in Washington, D.C.