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Mr. Speaker, the crime committed in the United States by foreign nationals is hard to determine. The statistics are all over the map. But let me give you some tonight.
The 9/11 Families For a Secure America say that 32 percent of all people incarcerated in the United States are in the United States illegally.
Recently, I had the opportunity to go to south Texas to visit some of our sheriffs on the Texas-Mexico border. There are 16 counties in Texas thatborder Mexico. Two of those are Culberson County, where Sheriff Oscar Carrillo is the sheriff. The other one is Hudspeth Country, where Arvin West is the sheriff. I was their guest over the weekend a couple of weeks ago.
And I was asking them this very question, ``How can we determine if the cross-border travelers are committing crime in the United States? Does it all stay in Mexico, where we know there is corruption and violent crime, or does it come over to the United States?''
Well, Sheriff Arvin West gave me this statistic. There are two jails in Hudspeth County, one has a little over 100, and the other one is a private jail of over 500. He said most of the people in both of those jails are foreign nationals.
And I asked him, "Are these people charged with immigration violations or are they charged with other crimes?'' He said, ``No, they are charged with committing crimes in my county.'' He said, in fact, the jail that has a little over 100, every person in the jail is illegally in the United States except for one person. He said, ``If I didn't have cross-border travelers committing crime in my county, I wouldn't need a jail except for two people, one for a male and one for a female.''
So we do understand that crime is coming into the United States from cross-border travelers because the United States does not enforce the rule of law on the Texas-Mexico border or the southern border of the United States.
The Justice Department has said that 80 percent of the crime in the United States now is drug related or gang related. Newsweek recently reported that Phoenix, Arizona, is the No. 1 kidnapping capital in the United States, and most of it's related to the drug cartels and human trafficking.
Recently Sheriff Arpaio from Maricopa County in Phoenix has been arresting folks that are illegally in the United States pursuant to a Federal program called the 287g Program. Federal funds go to local communities to train local peace officers to enforce immigration violations.
It's been so successful that he's now being investigated by the Federal authorities, not for seeing how successful it is, but to see if he is following the rule of law, because some people who want open borders are complaining about his work. Of course, he says, he welcomes the investigation because maybe the Federal Government could do their job better. But it's important that agencies all work together. We are all in this together.
Even my hometown in Houston is changing its attitude. For years the City of Houston has been accused by some of being a sanctuary city, like San Francisco. It claims it's not a sanctuary city, even though the Center For Immigration Studies says there are over 400,000 illegals in the City of Houston.
So at least 400,000 doesn't make you a sanctuary city, but be that as it may, violence has occurred against our peace officers, Officer James Harris, Officer Andrew Winzer, Officer Florentino Garcia, Officer Guy Gaddis, Officer Rodney Johnson and Officer Gary Gryder, a personal friend of mine. You may not know those names, Mr. Speaker, but those are all Houston police officers killed by foreign nationals, most of them illegally in the country.
As recently as March 5, Officer Richard Salter was trying to arrest an individual with an arrest warrant, and he was shot in the face by that individual. He was an individual from El Salvador who had been through the criminal justice system five times, ordered deported, and apparently he never went back to where he came from or he crossed the border again.
It's important that foreign nationals understand that we will not tolerate crime committed by them in the United States. And it makes no difference whether those people are legally in the United States or illegally in the United States.
You come to America, and you commit a crime, and you are a foreign national, those people need to be sent home first. We need to tell them to pack their toothbrush, you don't have a right to stay in this country. And our government, working with local authorities, ought to do everything it can to send those people back home.
You don't have a right to come here and commit crime and stay here. And we should enforce the rule of law first with those foreign nationals that commit crime in the United States. After all, it is the duty of our government.
The first duty of government is not building roads and bridges and naming a bunch of post offices. The first duty of government is to protect the country, protect the citizens that live here. And the government that we have, the United States of America, needs to enforce the rule of law in this country because that is the duty of government.
And that's just the way it is.
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