House Democrats and Republicans head to southern border for 3-day expedition next week

by Anna Giaritelli | Oct 13, 2017, 10:16 AM

A group of House Democrats and Republicans will head to sectors in southern Texas and California for a three-day border expedition next week. They will meet with federal officials and hear them speak about the challenges they face in securing the border. (AP Photo/Rodrigo Abd)

House Judiciary Chairman Bob Goodlatte will lead a group of Democratic and Republicans on a three-day border expedition to sectors in southern Texas and California next week, his office announced Friday.

"Next week, members traveling to the Rio Grande Valley and San Diego Sectors will meet with federal officials who work every day to secure our borders, enforce our immigration laws, and combat human and drug smuggling. We will hear from them regarding the challenges they face to better inform us on how to improve our nation's immigration laws," Goodlatte said in a statement.

The bipartisan group of lawmakers will visit the two states' borders with Mexico Monday through Wednesday. The intent of the trip is to see why border apprehension numbers have increased over recent months despite massive drops early on in President Trump's administration. Historically, numbers have increased during the summer months and the current figures remain below the number of apprehensions in recent years' summer months.

"The Trump Administration has reversed many of the Obama Administration's policies that caused disorder at our nation's Southwest border and is enforcing the law as written by Congress. As a result of consistent enforcement of the law, illegal border crossings at the U.S.-Mexico border dropped dramatically at the beginning of the Trump Administration. However, illegal border crossings are rising again despite the best efforts of the Trump Administration, demonstrating that Congress needs to close existing legislative loopholes and provide additional, long-needed legislative tools," the statement said.

Lawmakers will tour federal facilities, including those of Customs and Border Protection, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Homeland Security Investigations, and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.