DHS secretary says Haitian migrant crisis is 'nothing new'

DHS secretary says Haitian migrant crisis is 'nothing new'
© Washington Examiner/Pool

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro MayorkasAlejandro MayorkasFederal officers detail abuse described by asylum seekers Senate Republicans raise concerns about TSA cyber directives for rail, aviation Ending worksite raids is a show; focus should be on employer compliance MORE on Sunday shot back at criticisms of the Biden administration's handling of the Haitian migrant crisis, saying, "this is nothing new."

While appearing on Fox News Sunday, host Chris WallaceChristopher (Chris) WallaceChris Wallace on Colin Powell: He was 'very protective' of his reputation Liz Cheney is the Margaret Chase Smith of our time Sunday shows - Buttigieg warns supply chain issues could stretch to next year MORE asked Mayorkas to respond to Texas Gov. Greg AbbottGreg AbbottOvernight Health Care — Presented by Carequest — Key CDC panel backs Moderna, J&J boosters GOP senators call on Biden to back down from vaccine mandates DeSantis to call special session of legislature to fight vaccine mandates MORE (R) who accused the White House of failing to secure the U.S.-Mexico border.

Wallace questioned whether or not the administration has created a "magnet" for migrants who feel they have a strong chance of staying in the U.S. when they cross illegally.

"This is nothing new. We've seen this type of irregular migration many, many times throughout the years. I don't know if Governor Abbott said the same thing in 2019, when there were more than a million people encountered at the southern border," Mayorkas said.

Mayorkas stressed that the Biden administration was operating under the laws and statutes that are in place in the U.S.

Wallace questioned why the Biden administration permitted the Haitian migrants to enter the U.S. at all, asking why a "wall or a fence" hadn't been put up.

"It is the policy of this administration: we do not agree with the building of the wall," said Mayorkas. "The law provides that individuals can make a claim for humanitarian relief. That is actually one of our proudest traditions."

When asked about the suspended horse patrol that was seen blocking Haitian migrants from entering the U.S., Mayorkas declined to directly comment on the situation due to the ongoing investigation into the situation.