Beware of the “Secure Our Border First Act of 2015”

$1 Billion dollar per year blank check for Barack Obama

There is a new border security bill moving through the House that will not achieve the results claimed, rather it will serve to complement Obama’s executive amnesty. The Chamber of Commerce and big businesses wanting to keep the border open and drive down wages will be thrilled with it; those of us who wish to have current immigration laws enforced and keep us a sovereign nation will not.

Jessica Vaughan of The Center For Immigration Studies published an article today dissecting H.R.399, the Secure Our Border First Act of 2015, introduced by the committee’s chairman, Michael McCaul (R-Texas).

Here are Vaughan’s explanations of the provisions:

Operational Control and Situational Awareness. The bill requires the Department of Homeland Security to be able to observe and interdict all illegal incursions in the high-traffic areas within two years, and in the entire southwest border area within five years. It provides for specific enhancements to technology, infrastructure, and resources to accomplish this. This is an appropriate and worthy objective, but it is not a strategy. Besides, achieving control and awareness will not deter other illegal entry attempts if too many of those apprehended are released into the country instead of removed.

27 Miles of Double Fencing. This is certainly welcome but, again, inadequate. To put this into perspective, Hudspeth County, Texas, alone has 95 miles of unfenced border. We don’t need to build fencing along the entire border, but 27 more miles (to be built in three separate sectors) is a drop in the bucket compared to the 700 miles that was authorized (but never completed) by the 2006 Secure Fence Act. And, if Congress just reneges on the authorization like it has in the past, and does not appropriate the funds, it may never be built.

Flights, Drones, Towers, etc. The bill directs DHS to deploy additional drones, surveillance flights and towers, radar, communications equipment, maritime assets, boat ramps, forward operating bases (with specific features), and a Carrizo cane plant eradication program. Again, it sounds like Congress is really taking charge, but these assets are not all that helpful unless those aliens observed are caught, and those aliens caught are returned.

Metrics. It is widely agreed that the main metric now used to measure the pressure on the border — apprehensions — does not truly measure effectiveness, because it does not tell us how many got past the Border Patrol. The bill directs DHS to collect a more elaborate set of 28 different metrics to determine, among other things, the number of “gotaways”. Fine — but the bill ought to also mandate the disclosure of what happens to the apprehended aliens; are they returned, detained, or released by border officials or ICE?

Penalties for Illegal Aliens. Section 5 of the bill states that every alien apprehended must face a “consequence”. But in contrast to the great detail provided in the sections on metrics and infrastructure, no consequences are specified; there is no requirement for illegal aliens to be sent home. This is important, because the Obama administration’s version of a “consequence” is to place the apprehended aliens “into proceedings,” and/or apply for asylum, which means they are given a future court date, released, and issued a work permit. More than 90 percent of the family units and unaccompanied minors with final court dates last year absconded from those proceedings and disappeared into the illegal population. With the current dysfunctional state of our immigration system, being placed “in deportation proceedings” is more of a reward than a consequence.

Penalties for DHS Political Appointees. Should DHS fail to achieve operational control and situational awareness as required, DHS political appointees would face the specific consequences: no more travel in government aircraft, no training or conferences, and no bonuses, overtime pay, or salary increases.

More Personnel. Border Patrol staffing would rise to 21,370 (from 18,127 currently); CBP port of entry staffing would rise to 23,775; Air and Maritime personnel would be increased to 1,675.

Access to Federal Lands.The Border Patrol would have access to all federal lands, such as parks and forests, that they currently are prevented from patrolling by the Department of the Interior. This is a very helpful provision, but not exactly a game-changer.

Entry-Exit System. Like at least six other bills signed into law before it, this legislation includes a provision to require DHS to establish a biometric exit-tracking system at air, sea, and land ports within five years, assuming Congress actually appropriates the funding. Unfortunately, such a system would be of limited value unless DHS also implements a universal biometric entry record collection system at the land ports, so the land exit records can be compared to something.

Cost. The bill authorizes the government to spend $1 billion a year for the next 10 years on this plan.

This bill needs to be exposed immediately and the message must carry and resonate. This will be a Boehner favorite, they’ll say it “should appeal to conservatives”. No way. Catching and counting illegals mean nothing if they turn off the cameras,  drone surveillance and release the illegal aliens within our borders.

Read the rest of the article HERE – Vaughan writes about her interaction with Border Patrol Officers and other professional. Head over to The Center For Immigration Studies.

Originally published at

Follow Jessica Vaughan on Twitter @JessicaV_CIS, she is at the Center For Immigration Studies and is relentless and diligent when it comes to informing concernend citizens.

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