Lozano said the Del Rio border patrol sector’s chief border patrol agent, Austin Skero II, told him there were just under 1,000 individuals in custody in that sector and more than 250 of them were unaccompanied minors.
The mayor said he spoke with Julie Rodriguez, the director of the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs, who Lozano said assured him they were “trying to come up with a plan of action” to provide for the needs of illegal aliens released into the community.
“But this is nothing new. We were managing it in 2019, and here we are in 2021 managing another immigration crisis of great proportion and nothing’s been done, you know, and it is a Biden border crisis, in my opinion because there’s no plan of action,” Lozano said.
“It’s just kind of absurd what’s happening,” he added, referencing images of unaccompanied minors in U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) facilities wrapped in silver blankets.
When asked why Lozano had characterized Biden’s response as a “slap in the face,” he discussed the historic Texas freeze and the lack of resources in the Del Rio area during that time.
“It’s just really like, you know, who’s side are you on?” Lozano asked of Biden. “The American people were without water, electricity for days on end in Del Rio, Texas, and you’re going to release migrants, you know, those individuals that are seeking a better life and opportunity into this weather phenomenon?”
Lozano said people in his community are “nervous and scared,” including one business owner who told the mayor she was concerned about desperate individuals stealing from her.
The Democrat also defended CBP, saying they had been “scapegoated,” and pointed to rescue efforts undertaken by border patrol agents.
“This behavior is unlawful behavior no matter how you want to call it,” Lozano said, contending that illegal aliens who were seeking an increased quality of life by entering the U.S. are “being set up unsuccessfully” because they will not be able to acquire legitimate work and may become victims of violence.
“[O]n the other side of things, you’re condoning the criminal activity in Mexico because how do you think these individuals are able to traverse Mexico? Not through Google Maps or Apple Maps, I can tell you that much,” Lozano said.
“They’re speaking and talking to organized criminals who get them here, and that’s condoning that unlawful behavior on both sides of the border. We need a plan.”
U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas has claimed the department is doing its best with an asylum system that was left “dismantled” by former President Trump.
Though municipally elected positions in Texas are nonpartisan, Lozano has identified himself as a Democrat.
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Hayden Sparks is a reporter for The Texan. He has coached high school competitive speech and debate and has also been involved in community theater and politics. A native Texan, Hayden served as a delegate at the Republican Party of Texas Convention in 2016. He is on track to receive a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Liberty University. In his free time, Hayden is known to take walks around the neighborhood while listening to random music on Spotify.