Mayorkas maintains ‘border is secure’ despite record crossings, FBI sees ‘significant criminal threats’

The FBI and Department of Homeland Security do not agree on the security of the U.S. southern border, judging by testimony before the House Committee on Homeland Security.

Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas seemed to conflict with FBI Director Christopher Wray on Tuesday when asked whether the border is secure.

“Secretary Mayorkas, do you continue to maintain that the border is secure?” North Carolina Rep. Dan Bishop asked, referencing a claim Mayorkas made before the Judiciary Committee this summer.

INTERNAL DHS EMAILS DESCRIBE ‘ROUGH’ MEETING BETWEEN MAYORKAS, BORDER PATROL AGENTS

“Yes, and we are working day in and day out to enhance security, congressman,” Mayorkas responded.

Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas testifies before a House committee hearing on “Worldwide Threats to the Homeland” on Capitol Hill, Nov. 15, 2022.
(Reuters/Michael A. McCoy)

The Homeland Security secretary attempted to extrapolate before being cut off by Bishop, who responded, “I just wanted to make sure that that still is your assessment.”

Bishop remarked that he believed Mayorkas’ testimony “denies reality,” before asking Wray for his assessment.

MAYORKAS CLAIMS SOUTHERN BORDER ‘IS SECURE’ AS HISTORIC MIGRANT CRISIS RAGES

FBI Director Christopher Wray testifies with Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas before the House Homeland Security Committee on Capitol Hill, Nov. 15, 2022.
(Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

“Well, I can only speak to border security from our narrow lane,” Wray answered. “What I would say is that we see significant criminal threats coming from south of the border — whether it’s guns, drugs, money, violence.”

Wray continued, “We see transnational criminal organizations that are sending their drugs here and that are using street gangs here to distribute it. And that contributes to the violent crime crisis here.”

MAYORKAS ALERTED THAT NO HAITIAN MIGRANTS WERE ‘WHIPPED’ HOURS BEFORE WH PRESS CONFERENCE

Migrants cross into the U.S. in Normandy, Texas, Nov. 3, 2022.
(Fox News)

Wray went on to offer an example of threats coming across the border via drug trafficking, referencing an incident in Phoenix.

“You know, in Phoenix, we had to take down — working with CBP, who are phenomenal partners, I should add — where we seized in one vehicle interdiction enough fentanyl to kill the equivalent of the entire state of Pennsylvania,” Wray said.

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Department of Homeland Security officials described a tense January meeting between Mayorkas and Border Patrol officers as “rough,” according to newly unearthed emails – with agents telling Mayorkas that policies “aren’t working.”

The emails, obtained by the Heritage Foundation’s Oversight Project and provided to Fox News, show communications between DHS officials in the wake of a visit by Mayorkas to a morning muster of Border Patrol in Yuma, Arizona.

Fentanyl seized in Nogales, Arizona.
(CBP)

“Morning muster in Yuma was ROUGH,” Marsha Espinosa, assistant secretary of DHS public affairs, says in a Jan. 26 email. “One agent in the front town [sic] had his back turned to [Mayorkas] the entire time only to ask a question and then turned back.”

Fox News’ Bill Melugin and Adam Shaw contributed to this report.