Representative Maloy Reports On Recent Border Visit On Cedar City Broadcast
U.S Representative from Utah's Second District Celeste Maloy was on the radio show with us this morning talking about a recent trip she had with other members of congress to the U.S. border at Mexico. When we asked her what were the interesting things she saw, her answer was a bit of a surprise.
“What's most interesting actually is what we did not see,” she told us. When asked to elaborate Maloy said, “You followed the border situation during the holidays at Eagle Pass in Texas. It's completely overwhelmed and overrun. There are pictures all over of long lines and you know, they just had people piling up. They couldn't process them fast enough. I was there the first week in January, and they had the lowest number of immigrants that they've had in months. And so to me, that's the most interesting part of the story is that this border crossing that was completely overwhelmed one week was almost empty the next week, and the only thing that changed is that a bunch of members of Congress showed up and some of my colleagues kept asking the Border Patrol, did the administration tell you to clean this up? They were really skeptical at first. And Border Patrol kept saying we we have not changed any protocols. We didn't get any marching orders from Washington DC and I believe them. I think they're telling the truth. They seemed really confused. And so that leaves the most obvious explanation that the cartels really do have that much control over who crosses the border, where and when, and they knew we were coming and they didn't want us to have a story to tell. So they just turned off the spigot at Eagle Pass.”
Maloy contends that while Speaker of The House Mike Johnson tried to keep the trip quiet, the word got out before the 65 members of congress arrived at the border.
To that end, Maloy is hoping to make another border trip with less fanfare.
“The guy who represents that area, his name is Andy Gonzalez, and he's a friend of mine. He actually was in Utah a few weeks ago. And was saying you should come see what's going on. So I'm hoping that I can make another trip down there with just Congressman Gonzalez and that nobody knows we're coming,” Maloy told us.
The congressperson told us that she learned about the power the cartels have in regulating border crossings form local law enforcement and land owners. “We also talked to a lot of the local sheriff's and local land owners and the sheriff's had a really interesting perspective on this because they, you know, the border is a a federal issue, but they (sheriffs) have the responsibility for law enforcement in their counties, and their counties are bearing the brunt of what's happening at the border. And so some of them have started a task force and and they talked about how when a county gets really good at picking people up, then the migrants start coming through somewhere else,” according to Maloy.
We also talked about the budget process, and Maloy indicated that there is some progress being made. “We should have passed (this) a long time ago. Yeah, we did get good news on this over the weekend, though. The House and Senate leadership reached agreement yesterday, actually, on top line budget numbers. And those top line numbers are what the appropriations committees need to go build their budgets. So once you have a top line number, then they build an appropriations bill to match it, but they can't really do an appropriations bill until they know what the top line number is. And I spent time over the weekend with appropriators, and I asked a couple of them, is there any way we meet these deadlines coming up. They said if we could get top line numbers this week, they were still optimistic that we could get bills passed before the continuing resolutions run out.” Despite some comments from some members of congress and the Senate, Maloy does not see a government shut down coming. “I know there are some who keep talking about a shutdown. I think it's a tactic to keep everybody focused. I don't know that anybody actually wants a shutdown and a continuing resolution isn't a good option.”
Maloy continued to mention that we will be hearing from her often here in southern Utah. You can hear the entire exchange we had with Representative Maloy below.
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Gallery Credit: Emily Slape/Kevin Vargas