Biden’s Border Disaster Leads to Shutdown of Two Economically Vital Railway Bridges
On Sunday, reports surfaced that U.S. border officials had closed two vital rail bridges used for trade shipments between the U.S. and Mexico due to a surge in illegal immigrant smuggling. The news opened up yet another front in the continuing fallout from the ongoing border crisis, which lawmakers say will greatly harm the economy.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) announced that the closures were carried out because the Border Patrol was being overwhelmed and needed assistance processing migrants in an “evolving situation.” On Sunday, CBP in El Paso reported a 233% increase in daily migrant encounters.
The two closed border bridges connect El Paso, Texas with Ciudad Juarez, Mexico and Eagle Pass, Texas with Piedras Negras, Mexico, which “account for about 45% of its cross-border shipments.” It is estimated that the overall economic impact of the closures will amount to about $200 million per day. The closures “make a bad situation worse, inflicting even more economic harm on the U.S.-Mexico relationship and driving up costs,” said Border Trade Alliance President Britton Mullen in a statement.
Meanwhile, a simultaneous crisis in the Red Sea threatens to further disrupt global trade. As Iran-backed Houthi terrorists from Yemen have launched at least 100 missile and drone attacks against shipping vessels in the last month, the U.S. is “scrambling” to protect the vital shipping corridor, which is used by at least 44 countries around the world. The Houthis claim the attacks are in retaliation for Israel’s war in Gaza, which it is conducting due to the October 7 atrocities perpetrated by Hamas terrorists against innocent Israeli civilians.
In response to the development, maritime industry expert John Konrad noted that announcements by countries like Greece for its shipowners to avoid the Red Sea will likely have “a ripple effect that will be felt across international waters, influencing global trade routes, energy supply, and even food security.”
The Red Sea crisis and rail bridge closures will likely cause trade disruptions that could have a significant impact on the global supply chain. On Tuesday, Rep. Randy Weber (R-Texas) joined “Washington Watch” to discuss how President Joe Biden’s open border policies are having foreseeable consequences on multiple facets of American life, such as the economy.
“I actually filed a bill recently that [would] reinstate the ‘Remain in Mexico’ policy,” he pointed out. “People ought to have to stay there to turn in their claim that they need asylum. … [Biden has] absolutely opened the borders to let everybody in, and what this is doing is not only is it interrupting international trade, Mexico is Texas’s number one trading partner. Biden doesn’t care about how it affects agriculture, business, parts for automobiles, whatever the trade may be. He wants to make it easier for these people to get across. It’s plain and simple.”
Weber went on to express support for Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) signing a bill into law on Monday that makes illegal immigration a state crime, giving police officers the authority to make arrests of illegal migrants.
“We’re going to have to bear that burden,” he emphasized. “I was in the Texas House for four years, and I was vice chair of the Border Committee. … Back then, we were putting $200 million a session on the border. Now it’s like $3 billion. We’re going to bear the brunt of this if we’re going to arrest those who are illegally entering the country. … We’ve got to have a place to keep them, to feed them, to give them an air conditioned or heated place to stay. You’ve got to tend to their needs. … Fortunately, Texas has got some surplus money built up, but there’s absolutely no way on God’s green earth that we should have to pay for the international border problem with Mexico. And this administration is intent on letting it rock and roll just like it is.”
Weber concluded by summing up the extent of the crisis occurring on the southern border.
“[T]he CBP sources said in the last 24 hours, there was more than 12,600 migrants encountered. Now, keep in mind that those are the ones we know about, those are the ones we catch. The ones that they call the ‘gotaways,’ we don’t know about them. [T]he FBI has put out a warning for heightened alert that they’re afraid there may be some terroristic acts in our country because of those coming across from countries like Syria, Iran, [and] Iraq. And listen, 12,600 migrants in 24 hours. If it was 10,000 [a day], [that’s] 300,000 a month.”
Guest host and former congressman Jody Hice could only shake his head at the unfolding situation. “The Biden administration has chosen the faster processing of migrants over international commerce.”
Dan Hart is senior editor at The Washington Stand.