Roe: 'Humanitarian crisis' is at southern border

Hank Hayes • Jun 13, 2019 at 5:30 PM

U.S. Rep. Phil Roe declared on Thursday a “humanitarian crisis” with illegal immigration at the southern border.

Roe, a retired physician, said in the next few weeks he will be going to the border with the GOP doctors’ caucus to see firsthand what is happening.

“This is very, very frustrating for me,” Roe, R-Tenn., told reporters during a conference call. “The (House) speaker (Nancy Pelosi) knows. They’ve been told over and over and over again. ... In the next few weeks, Health and Human Services runs out of funds to take care of these folks. We have funded for 45,000 detention beds. ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) has 52,000 in detention now ... and they’re releasing many of them. Over 200,000 have been released since December into the United States. We know that 90 percent of those people will never show up for their court hearing. ... Child smuggling is going on. The cartels are telling people exactly where to go so it opens up the rest of the border. We don’t know how many we haven’t caught. ... We need to get our border under control.”

Roe also noted he is concerned about Africans with the ebola disease coming over the border.

“What happens if we have an ebola outbreak in this country because we didn’t protect our southern border?” he asked.

Roe admitted Republicans did nothing about illegal immigration when they controlled the U.S. House, which is now under a Democrat majority.

Roe also addressed these questions:

Do the Democrats really want to impeach the president?

“I don’t know. Obviously every indication is that. I’ll give Speaker Pelosi credit. I think she sees that’s a road less traveled. I think that would be a not smart thing to do. When you look at this and there’s no collusion, it’s hard for me to understand how you could obstruct something. It didn’t happen. I think it would be a bad idea for them to do that and they very well may. ... There’s certainly a loud minority that wants to.”

How did you feel about the resolution passed by the House to enforce subpoenas to compel Attorney General Barr and former White House legal counsel Don McGahn to testify and give up documents?

“I think the process is unprecedented. ... It looks to us like you’re using some tools (to use in impeachment proceedings). Part of our job is to investigate things, but we just spent $30 million (on the Mueller report) and took 40 FBI agents and 19 lawyers and two and a half years and came up with absolutely nothing. ... This is political. (Democrats) are in charge of the House and we’ll find out how this ends up.”

Kingsport Times News Videos