In an interview with Newsmax on Jan. 25, Johnson accused the administration of “lying through their teeth” when explaining their decision to allow up to hundreds of thousands of illegal aliens into the United States was based on “humanitarian reasons.”
“There is nothing ‘humane’ about the sex trafficking, the drug overdoses, the human trafficking,” Johnson told Newsmax on Jan. 25. “We are probably putting somewhere around $18 billion in the pockets of some of the most evil people on the planet because the Biden administration is facilitating the business model of these people, it’s a scandal.”
The lawmaker said he estimated that around 4.5 million illegal aliens have crossed the U.S. border since Biden took office in 2021.
“This is all about President Biden’s open border policy,” he said. “That is what they want.”
Johnson’s comments come as U.S. Customs and Border Protection reported on Jan. 23 that the number of illegal alien encounters across the southern border for December 2022 rose to a monthly record of 251,487.
llegal Alien Encounters Surge at Border
That figure far surpassed the previous record of 241,136 set in May 2022 and is up 7 percent from November, when it stood at 234,896.
It also far outweighs the number of illegal alien encounters reported in 2021 and 2020: 179,253 and 73,994, respectively.
Despite the record-high numbers, CBP Acting Commissioner Troy Miller said in a statement that the latest figures show that Biden’s “new border enforcement measures are working.”
“Even as overall encounters rose because of smugglers spreading misinformation around the court-ordered lifting of the Title 42 public health order, we continued to see a sharp decline in the number of Venezuelans unlawfully crossing our southwest border, down 82 percent from September 2022,” said Miller. “Early data suggests the expanded measures for Cubans, Haitians, and Nicaraguans are having a similar impact, and we look forward to sharing the additional data in the next update.”
On Wednesday, Florida joined 19 other states challenging Biden’s recently announced program that grants tens of thousands of illegal aliens from the nations of Cuba, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Venezuela, authorization to live and work in the United States.
Specifically, the program will grant “humanitarian” parole to eligible migrants who apply from their home countries, meaning they will be eligible to apply for legal status for two years, provided they find a sponsor inside the United States and pass a background check.
The parole will be determined on a “case-by-case basis,” according to the administration. The entry and work authorization is not legal status.
More States Join Lawsuit Against Biden ‘Parole’ Program
In their lawsuit (pdf), the states, which alongside Florida include Alabama, Kansas, Ohio, and Texas, among others, contend that the parole program is not legal.
“The parole program established by the Department fails each of the law’s three limiting factors. It is not case-by-case, is not for urgent humanitarian reasons, and advances no significant public benefit,” the states wrote. “Instead, it amounts to the creation of a new visa program that allows hundreds of thousands of aliens to enter the United States who otherwise have no basis for doing so. This flouts, rather than follows, the clear limits imposed by Congress.”
“In establishing this unlawful program, the Department did not engage in notice-and-comment rulemaking under the Administrative Procedure Act, substituting instead its unilateral judgment to bring into the United States hundreds of thousands of aliens who otherwise have no other authority to enter,” the states added.
In unveiling the new parole program, the White House said in a statement: “Unlike some Republican officials playing political games and obstructing real solutions to fix our broken immigration system, President Biden has a plan and is taking action.”
The White House added that the program will serve to encourage illegal aliens to enter the U.S. in a lawful manner.
However, Sen. Johnson took aim at the program on Wednesday, telling Newsmax that he believes Democrats are simply looking for more voters.
“I can’t come up with another reason why you would throw open your borders. Why you would allow gang members, a flood of deadly drugs, the human trafficking, the sex trafficking? Why would you allow that?”, Johnson said.