They also brought along an official who once fantasized about beating up a Democratic member of Congress on live TV.
A delegation of House Republicans from Texas visited the U.S.-Mexico border on Tuesday accompanied by two former Trump administration officials who have in the past smeared immigrants and in one instance threatened to fight a Democratic congressman over immigration policy.
Included in the trip were Reps. Jodey Arrington, Louis Gohmert, Brian Babin, Michael Burgess, Ronny Jackson, Pete Sessions, Beth Van Duyne, Randy Weber, Pat Fallon, Troy Nehls, Kevin Brady, John Carter, and Trip Roy.
The group used the visit to amplify the claim that President Joe Biden has created a "border crisis," an allegation that has been made in concert with anti-immigrant hate groups and other Republicans in the House and Senate.
Accompanying the Texas lawmakers to the border — and given a slot to speak at the event — was former Acting Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection Mark Morgan. Morgan served in the Trump administration from 2019 until Biden took office.
In a 2019 appearance on Fox News' "Tucker Carlson Tonight," Morgan referred to child migrants as future members of the MS-13 gang.
"I've been to the detention facilities where I've walked up to these individuals that are 'so-called minors,'" Morgan said, "Seventeen or under, and I've looked at them and I've looked at their eyes, Tucker, and I've said that is a soon-to-be MS-13 gang member."
Near the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak in March of 2020, Morgan claimed that Trump's border wall would aid in the fight against the virus.
During the presidential campaign, he attacked then-candidate Biden for his opposition to the border wall and claimed that opposing building the structure was a positive "message to the cartels."
Also speaking at the Republican event was Tom Homan, who served as Acting Director of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement from 2017 to 2019. Since then, Homan has been a contributor to Fox News.
After testifying before Congress in 2019 at a hearing on migrant children, Homan told the hosts of "Fox and Friends" he considered "getting up and throwing that man [Rep. Jesús García (D-IL)] a beating right there in the middle of the room." García had questioned Homan about the Trump administration's child separation policy at the border.
In another appearance on the network, Homan argued in favor of ending the longstanding policy of birthright citizenship — granting immediate citizenship to all children born within the United States — and said unless the policy was rescinded "more women are going to be raped" and "more children are going to die."
Homan has argued that refugees seeking to escape harsh conditions in Central and South America are an "attack" on America, and that a decline in immigration meant that rapes of women and murders of children would go down, implying that immigrants are responsible for such crimes.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.