Congressman Dan Crenshaw advocates military strike, calling cartels 'clear and present' threat
HOUSTON - As concerns loom regarding the U.S./Mexico Border, especially on the heels of Title 42 ending and the ongoing cartel crisis, residents are in need of answers to how lawmakers plan to address it all.
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During an interview with Congressman Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) a decorated Navy SEAL officer who has represented Texas' 2nd district since 2019, he explained how he's leading a special house task force focused on countering Mexico's drug cartels.
**Read the full transcribed interview below**
Greg Groogan: Congressman Dan Crenshaw assess what's happening on our border with retraction of Title 42.
Congressman Dan Crenshaw: Our hope has always been that once this whole Title 42 issue is rescinded that we actually have a plan in place, so right now we are waiting and seeing. The administration claims they have a plan in place. I've seen their plan. I like many parts of that plan, but the reality is the laws have always been the laws and since day one Biden has basically refused to enforce those laws, so there is not a lot of faith they will do a better job now without Title 42, so that's the fear. We've seen crossings go down in the last few days and if that's sustained, that's great news, because it shows there's a disincentive to cross in the first place.
SEE 2022 INTERVIEW: Congressman Crenshaw talks border crisis, calls drug cartels 'existential' threat
GG: Congressman, given the challenges, long-term, is a Border Patrol force of about 19,000 adequate to enforce our immigration laws?
DC: You can definitely bulk that up, but look the main problem is refusal to enforce. The problem has been that because this administration doesn't enforce the laws and has basically implemented an illegal parole system, otherwise known as "catching and releasing", telling people they can may be show up for their court date should they choose to do so, that's created a magnet to come in, so you stop that and stop the inflow and our current number of resources would be just fine.
GG: Congressman you have warned pretty loudly in the past that any improvement is going to have to include effective countermeasures against the cartels. Why is that so critical?
DC: It's really critical, for one reason, they have operational control of the border. The Mexican government does not have operational control of their side of the border, the cartels do. The cartels have this zero-risk business model where they really can't get caught, and they can make billions and I think the last estimate is up to $13 billion a year, so that's pretty good, so what do they do with that? They re-invest in their drug business. What are they doing with their drug business, well they are buying the precursors for Fentanyl from China, making Fentanyl, pressing it into pills, and killing tens of thousands of Americans a year. That's another reason we should go after the cartels because they are really directly responsible for killing Americans, and it's time for a whole new government approach to deal with that problem. Treat them like the enemy of the state that they are.
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GG: Speaker McCarthy has tapped you to lead a high-profile task force to figure out effective strategies against the cartels. What do you hope to accomplish?
DC: The goal will be to assess what we are already doing. Assess the capabilities of the cartels. Assess their vulnerabilities. Give a report to the speaker on that and then draft actual legislation targeting their finances, targeting their network, looking at what we are doing on the international level and regional level, and providing comprehensive legislation.
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GG: Congressman, will military action in cooperation with the Mexican government be on the table for discussion?
DC: As you know, it's certainly on my table for discussion, and it's a big priority for me because it sends such a strong message to the cartels. You've seen the President of Mexico clutch his pearls and say that we are going to invade Mexico. That, of course, is never what we were going to do. The entire point would be to work by with and through the Mexican government and send a message to the cartels that they've crossed a red line with the Fentanyl production, and we will use whatever means necessary to go after them. We have a clear and present danger, basically a para-military threat, right on our border, and we have to deal with it.