Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano said that U.S. border security has “never been stronger” during a Wednesday Senate hearing regarding immigration reform.
Napolitano’s remarks came as she worked to convince Senators that they should agree to an immigration reform package that provides both heightened border security and an easier pathway to citizenship for immigrants already in the Nation.
“I often hear the argument that before reform can move forward, we must first secure our borders,” Napolitano said in her opening remarks to the Senate Judiciary Committee.
“But too often, the ‘border security first’ refrain simply serves as an excuse for failing to address the underlying problems. It also ignores the significant progress and efforts that we have undertaken over the past four years. Our borders have, in fact, never been stronger.”
According to the Homeland Security Secretary, a record 409,000 illegal immigrants were detained last year.
But Senator Jeff Sessions (R-Ala.) said the Administration of President Barack Obama simply has not done enough about immigration to be in a position to ask for an easier path to citizenship for illegals.
“I truly believe, had this Administration done a better job of enforcement, been more effective in moving forward with a lawful system of immigration, you would be in a much stronger position with the American people who ask for a more broad solution to the problem,” Sessions said.