Mr. Speaker, it is said that Justice is the one thing you should always find. You have to saddle up the boys, you have to draw a hard line. Justice is the one thing you should always find.
Those lyrics are from a song by Willie Nelson, not quite the legal scholar most of us would think, but a true statement nonetheless.
But justice is the one thing you can't find on the Texas-Mexico border, and recent events show that.
Not too long ago, two of our border agents, Jose Compean and Ignacio Ramos were doing their job on the Texas-Mexico border, on patrol keeping illegals out of the United States.
They come in contact with a drug dealer who sees them and takes off running in his van. His van happened to have 700-plus pounds of marijuana. That is not just for personal use, Mr. Speaker, that is worth $1 million on the market in Texas. He sees the two drug agents. He flees, jumps out of the van and tries to cross the Rio Grande River. The facts are in dispute as to what occurs. There is a fight with the agents. The agents say the drug dealer had a weapon pointed at them. After the smoke cleared, the drug dealer gets shot in the buttocks and runs back to Mexico.
I say: Well done, border agents. Give them a medal. But that is not what our Federal Government decided to do. Our Federal Government decided to go to Mexico, find this drug dealer, a habitual offender that brings drugs into the United States, and give him immunity to testify against the two border agents, bring him back to the United States and let him testify in a so-called trumped up civil rights violation.
But while waiting to testify, he crosses the border again and given immunity, yes, a second time for bringing drugs into the United States.
After the trial was over with, both of these drug agents were convicted for enforcing the law, doing the job that they are supposed to. A week from today, these two border agents will be taken to the Federal penitentiary to serve 10 and 11 years respectively.
Mr. Speaker, this ought not to be. Our Federal Government chose the wrong side in this case. They chose the enemy side in this case.
Mr. Speaker, what are our border agents to do when somebody flees, being a drug dealer, and tries to go back to Mexico? What are they supposed to do? Are they supposed to say, ``Halt in the name of the law''?
Mr. Speaker, those days are over in this country.
So either they can enforce the law or they can't enforce the law. Enforcing the law on the Texas border is unenforceable. It is a lawless border because our Federal Government always chooses the wrong side.
Today, Jose Compean and his wife, Patty, were here in Washington, DC. Many Members of Congress in this House on both sides talked to them about the facts of this case and their lives and how it has been changed. All Jose Compean ever wanted to do was be a border agent for the United States and protect the dignity of this country, and he is being punished for that.
So our government had a choice, the choice to be on the side of the drug dealer or the border agents; the choice to be on the side of the illegals or the legals; the side of crime or crime fighters. And our government chose poorly, Mr. Speaker. This ought not to be.
My prior career before becoming a Member of Congress was as a judge in Texas. I heard over 25,000 felony cases of all types. And I am here to tell you, based on what I know about this case, a great injustice has occurred not only to our border agents but to our country.
Our Federal Government needs to take a stand for border security, enforce the rule of law and support those that we have put down to the border with few utensils to protect the dignity of this country.
Yes, Mr. Speaker, justice is the one thing we should always find. We had better find it on the Texas-Mexico border, or injustice will rule the day and this country will pay for it by failing to enforce the rule of law and in failing to keep illegal drug dealers out of this Nation.
And that's just the way it is.