South Dakota Congressman Dusty Johnson is back in KELOLAND after what he calls an “educational” trip to the southern border. Johnson and fellow members of Congress spent time in southwest Arizona earlier this week.
After spending time down south, Johnson says the hands-on experience at the U.S.-Mexico border is something every member of Congress should take part in.
“We do have a crisis at the southern border. We had twice as many people apprehended in March as we had in January. We need to fix this problem,” Johnson said.
Johnson says he spent 95-percent of his time in the Yuma/San Luis area. While he was there, he spoke with agents from border patrol and the DEA. He says they need more resources to be able to do their jobs better.
“I’ve always been a believer in border security. A wall is a key part of that but it’s only a part. We clearly need more wall, better wall at the southern border. We also need to be employing better technology,” Johnson said.
Johnson adds Washington can help out by creating better policies. He’s specifically in favor of gathering fingerprints.
“Because we treat people with families, so much better than we do single men, we are increasingly seeing children being used by people who are not their parents to gain easier access into this country. We should be fingerprinting young people that come into this country from Guatemala, Honduras, so that children can not be used. They can not be recycled by bad people who want to use them as a commodity or a pawn,” Johnson said.
Congress is appropriating money for border security but Johnson says it’s not at a quick enough pace.
“It didn’t change my views on what the solutions are. I’ve been in favor of physical barriers but I think it gave me a deeper understanding of how many things we need more than just a wall. Congress has got to get to work and do their job,” Johnson said.