Border Patrol agents got into a heated exchange with leadership during a recent visit by Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
Agents were upset over reports that illegal immigrant adults with criminal records have been and are continuing to be secretly released across the U.S., despite a federal law mandating their immediate deportation.
The visit was supposed to be a morale-boosting visit. However, it turned into a terse exchange between administration and agents.
U.S. Border Patrol Chief Raul Ortiz and agents had a tense back-and-forth exchange, as seen in a leaked video of the meeting.
Ortiz acknowledged the agents’ frustration. “I get it. You come to work, you’re frustrated. You’re upset because you didn’t get the desired outcome that you want. Doesn’t mean you give up.”
“We’re not,” responded one agent.
“I know you’re not,” replied Ortiz, “That’s why I’m saying we don’t give up. We stay focused, we continue to do the job and the mission that we signed up for. We all signed up for it, we all raised our hand.”
That is when the meeting became more heated. “It’s kinda hard to say that when…” began an agent.
“It’s not hard to say it,” Ortiz quickly interrupted. “It may be hard for you to say it, I’ve been doing this for 31 years. It’s not hard for me to say it.”
Other agents then spoke up, stating, “You keep releasing criminal aliens into the country.”
As the meeting continued, it was apparent that agents were not satisfied with the answers they were getting from Ortiz and Mayorkas. Chief Ortiz questioned them, “Why are you guys getting caught up in semantics… I’ve been doing this job as long as y’all.”
“That’s the problem, chief,” interjected an agent. “For evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing. That’s exactly what’s happening here. Good men are doing nothing. You’re allowing illegal aliens to be dropped off in communities.”
Ortiz continued to insist that the agents were doing good work by taking fentanyl and methamphetamine off the streets and rescuing people.
With that, a person in the back of the room shot back, “And under this administration, in the last year, we’ve got the highest fentanyl deaths in the history of our country.”
Ortiz responded, saying the U.S. has caught more fentanyl coming across the border this year than the previous one, but one agent wondered how much has made it through, which hasn’t been seen.
“I don’t know. We’re working on it,” claimed Ortiz.
“And that’s the problem,” responded the agent.