Hoeven Reviews Southern Border Mission with North Dakota National Guard Members

Senator in Texas to Draw Attention to Illegal Immigration, Drug and Human Trafficking Crisis

EL PASO, TX – Senator John Hoeven, a member of the Senate Homeland Security Appropriations Committee, traveled to the southern border this week to review the North Dakota National Guard (NDNG) 1st Battalion, 112th Aviation Regiment’s mission providing aviation support along the nation’s southern border. Hoeven’s visit comes as Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced a record 2,378,944 individuals illegally crossing the southern border in Fiscal Year 2022. The senator met with Guard members and CBP officials, and took an aerial tour of the border. The visit is part of the senator’s ongoing work to secure the border and draw attention to the illegal immigration, drug smuggling and human trafficking crisis at the border.  

“Our North Dakota National Guard members and CBP are working diligently to secure our southern border, despite the policies of the Biden administration,” said Hoeven. “The Biden administration’s refusal to enforce our laws is incentivizing illegal immigration and enabling both human and drug trafficking. Border security is key to our national security.”

In addition to the illegal immigration crisis, Hoeven noted the increase in drug trafficking. In FY22, CBP seized 12,860 lbs. of fentanyl at the border, up from 11,200 lbs. seized in FY21. Fentanyl overdose is now the leading cause of death for Americans age 18-45.

Hoeven has traveled to the southern border to draw attention to the growing illegal immigration crisis, including to the Rio Grande Valley in July with a congressional delegation led by Texas Senators Ted Cruz and John Cornyn and to the Del Rio region in April to meet with members of the NDNG’s 957 Multi-role Bridge Company. Hoeven also traveled with a bipartisan congressional delegation to Mexico, Ecuador, Colombia and Guatemala to outline the need to work together to stop illegal migration and prevent human and drug trafficking.

Additionally, Hoeven continues pressing the Biden administration to:

  • Enforce our laws and secure the southern border, including resuming construction of the border wall and putting in place the necessary infrastructure, personnel and technology.
  • Reinstate key immigration policies such as:
    • The Migrant Protection Protocols (MPP) or Remain in Mexico Policy, which required people seeking asylum at the southern border to wait in Mexico while their case was adjudicated.
    • The Safe Third Country Agreements so those seeking asylum from El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala can be returned to their home country to await the outcome of their claims.
    • The Title 42 Public Health Order, an important tool that allows immigration officials to return illegal immigrants to their home country and prevent the spread of COVID-19.
  • Move toward a merit-based immigration system.