DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas has exercised his power to waive 26 federal regulations in order to build a border wall in south Texas. These laws include the Clean Air Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act. He justifies this action by stating that there is a “acute and immediate need.” This declaration was made in response to rising illegal migration in Starr County, which is located in the Rio Grande Valley Sector. So far in this fiscal year, there have been over 245,000 interactions between migrants and border patrol agents in Starr County.
This action represents a departure from the earlier attitude taken by the Biden administration, which had halted the construction of additional walls along the border. President Biden had previously promised that there would be “not another foot of wall constructed” during his tenure as president. The present construction is made possible by the DHS appropriations bill for the fiscal year 2019, which includes funding that has been set up especially for wall projects in the RGV Sector.
Over the recent rise in the number of people entering the country illegally across the southern border, the administration of Vice President Joe Biden has come under fire from both Republicans and Democrats. The government has been criticized for its role in the rise in the number of people who cross the border illegally by stopping building on the border wall and rolling back restrictions that were implemented during the Trump administration. Despite the fact that Republicans have pointed the finger of blame at the practices of the Biden administration, some leftist states and localities have also advocated for measures to stem the influx of illegal immigration.
This action by Secretary Mayorkas demonstrates the administration’s shift in strategy to border security and its readiness to use current financing for border infrastructure projects. The shift in approach highlights the administration’s willingness to use existing funding.