House Committee Hearings Confirm: Open Borders are Bad for Everyone

February 09, 2023

By Kristen Ziccarelli


  • On February 1 and February 7, the House Oversight and Judiciary Committees held their first hearings on the Biden Administration’s border crisis.
  • The witnesses offered eye-opening perspectives on the dark reality of the havoc on our southern border and the way open border policies harm both migrants and American citizens.
  • If the Biden Administration does not make a serious change to its immigration policy, these alarming incidents will only continue to take place.

The 118th Congress has started carrying out its oversight responsibilities by investigating the Biden Administration’s border crisis. In two separate hearings, members of the House Oversight and Judiciary Committees questioned two Border Patrol (BP) Chiefs; a Cochise County, Arizona sheriff; a father who lost his son to fentanyl poisoning; and a Judge from El Paso, Texas, about their perspectives on the current situation.

In the House Oversight hearing, the BP Chiefs offered first-hand witness testimony of the challenges they face and, in doing so, confirmed what many Americans already knew: the cartels control the southern border. In only a few minutes of testimony, BP Chief John Modlin explained that “no one crosses the border in the Tucson sector without going through the cartels.” Moments later, his fellow witness, BP Chief Gloria Chavez, affirmed that from the moment migrants leave their place of origin, they are exploited by the cartels, which can be unspeakably abusive and indifferent to their suffering.

Considering the ruthlessness of the cartels, it is difficult to imagine why anyone would want to encourage more migrants to make the journey to the southern border. Unfortunately, the Biden Administration’s policies have done just that, as BP Chief John Modlin explained. After addressing the spike in illegal apprehensions during the past 24 months, Modlin stated that illegal immigrants come to the border in droves because they believe that with the election of the Biden Administration, the border is “open.”

While the testimony from the BP Chiefs confirmed how dangerous the border journey is, the witnesses in the House Judiciary hearing spoke directly about the deadly consequences of open borders in American communities. During emotional testimony, Mr. Brandon Dunn explained that he is one of the tens of thousands of American parents who suffer every day from their child’s fentanyl poisoning. “He was fifteen years old; he was a sophomore at Johnson High School. He was murdered by a drug dealer selling counterfeit Percocet,” Mr. Dunn said through tears.

Nearly all fentanyl in American communities is imported to Mexico from China and then smuggled across our southern border. But the deadly consequences of open borders do not stop with fentanyl overdoses. Arizona Sheriff Mark Dannels recounted the time when one of his deputies stopped a smuggler driver carrying fentanyl and three illegal migrants. The driver attacked the officer and was killed by another car on the road, and then the officer was attacked by one of the illegal immigrants. In another incident, a cartel killed Dannels’s deputy. Sadly, aggravated attacks on law enforcement are at an all-time high, according to Sheriff Dannels.

Additionally, Congressman Troy Nehls (TX-22), who is a member of the Judiciary Committee, told the story of a 65-year-old woman who was fatally hit by a car while she was headed to a birthday party. The other car was involved in a high-speed chase and was driven by a smuggler with three illegal aliens. The Congressman also recounted how another eighty-one-year-old woman was killed in a hit-and-run by an illegal alien who had previously been deported six times.

The real story coming out of these hearings is that this border crisis is causing terrible consequences for both illegal migrants and American citizens. No one is better off with open borders, and the Biden Administration not only lacks compassion for the American people but for the migrants who are being exploited by the cartels and are dying in the desert on their journey to the border.

These hearings offered new credibility regarding the reality of the Biden Administration’s border crisis: people are dying from fentanyl poisoning, millions of migrants are being abused by cartels, law enforcement officers are being put at greater risk, and our Nation’s Border Patrol is overwhelmed. It is unconscionable that Members of Congress can sit next to a man who lost his son from fentanyl crossing our border and a sheriff who has seen his own deputies attacked by violent illegal migrants and conclude that the Biden Administration’s policies are keeping the American people safe. A troubling theme in both hearings was that those who want to secure our border and reverse these alarming trends are racist. Instead of name-calling, our lawmakers should learn from Mr. Dunn, who reminded the committee that “this isn’t a political issue; it’s an issue of safety of our children and the citizens of this country.”