The Biden administration has effectively placed border agents under a “gag order,” banning immigration officials handling the ongoing crisis at the Southwest U.S. border from speaking to the media or giving tours that may expose the true nature of the latest record-breaking migrant wave.
According to NBC News, border agents have been verbally instructed by the administration to deny media requests for “ride alongs” and tours of overcrowded border facilities, and to make sure all questions from the press are passed through Washington, D.C. first.
Border Patrol officials have been told to deny all media requests for "ride-alongs" with agents along the southern land border; local press officers are instructed to send all information queries, even from local media, to the press office in Washington for approval; and those responsible for cultivating data about the number of migrants in custody have been reminded not to share the information with anyone to prevent leaks, the officials said.
Border agents said they haven’t offered any ride-along tours since Biden took office.
NBC also added that their own requests for photos of the inside of the detention facilities have largely been denied by default, saying the one photo they have received didn’t show enough of the facility to give much information.
The outlet also added that even the Trump administration never denied media access, even during the worst of the much smaller migrant influx nearly three years ago.
“At the height of the Trump administration’s child separation policy in June 2018, it allowed media to tour facilities where separated children were held,” NBC reported.
The report comes just days after news broke that the Biden administration was housing more than 4,200 migrant children in overflowing facilities, many of them not designed to hold minors. The administration recently made plans to use a Dallas convention center to house up to 3,000 migrant teen boys, having already opened at least two overflow facilities in Texas that can hold hundreds of migrant children apiece. Thousands more migrant adults, including families with children in tow, are also being processed through jam-packed centers and released into the community, sometimes within hours of having been apprehended and without first being screened for COVID.