Congresswoman Elissa Slotkin says she will be traveling to the southern border as part of a bipartisan delegation later this month to see the condition of detained migrants being held in what she called, “shameful, inhumane conditions.”
The 8th District Democrat issued a statement this morning saying, “Many people in my district feel passionately about protecting our borders. I strongly believe in border security, and I believe that our immigration system is broken and requires a major overhaul. But let me be clear: There is no rationale that excuses how our government is treating the migrants, in particular the migrant children, currently in its care. We must do better.”
She also said she was, “deeply troubled by the reports of the behavior by some of our border officers toward migrants, as well as toward some of my House colleagues. Any official paid by taxpayer dollars is bound by a code of conduct and is subject to the Hatch Act, which prohibits any political activity or overt political bias in a workplace setting. I expect leadership at Customs and Border Patrol to not only condemn any misconduct, but to hold accountable any officers engaging in inappropriate behavior.” It was reported earlier this week by ProPublica that members of a secret Facebook group for current and former Border Patrol agents joked about the deaths of migrants, discussed throwing burritos at Latino members of Congress visiting a detention facility in Texas on Monday and posted vulgar illustrations of Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Last week, Slotkin voted for two supplemental funding bills with money to provide, among other things, basic necessities for detained migrant children. She said the House bill, which she voted for, was the stronger bill. The Senate passed its own, separate bill, 84 to 8. “Unfortunately, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell refused to even consider the House’s version. When the Senate’s bill came to the House for a vote, many of my colleagues voted against it due to fears over its lack of oversight measures. I understand and respect those concerns. However, I felt that we simply could not let the funding for these migrant children run out in early July, as it would have without a bill passed. What is happening at our border required an immediate response, in my view, and while the Senate’s bill was not as strong as I wanted, I felt it was important to start moving money to the border as soon as possible, and so I voted in support. I will work with my colleagues on the Homeland Security Committee to ensure the money is spent as it was intended.”
Meanwhile, Slotkin was in Livingston County Tuesday, engaging first-hand with law enforcement on a ride-along with a Michigan State Police trooper from the Brighton Post, posting later on Facebook that it was a great way for her to better understand some of the tools, such as in-car computers allowing for less time back at the post, and challenges, like those presented by the legalization of marijuana for adults 21 and over, that law enforcement officers have to work with while on the job.
Following the ride-along, Slotkin then held a pre-scheduled meet and greet with district residents at the Brighton Coffeehouse and Theater where she answered questions about election security, healthcare, PFAS and the situation at the southern border. (JK)