House Oversight Committee Chair Opens Border Patrol Investigation

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House Oversight Committee chair Representative Elijah Cummings (D-MD) is not a man to make angry. He was nearly beaten to death when he marched with Martin Luther King, and yet he continued. He has taken on waste, fraud, and abuse. Here is just one example of his courage in the face of corruption.

Cummings will not back down against Trump in spite of the president’s attacks on him and the city he had represented, Baltimore, since 1996.

He just sent a letter to the acting commissioner of the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) Mark Morgan, because he was concerned that some of the agents in the recently unearthed secret and dark Facebook groups were still at work. This was in spite of atrocious postings by a large group of employees, both on the job or off. The memes were racist and sexist. In addition, there were crude jokes about the deaths of migrants.

The letter said that the committee was worried that these border patrol agents and other CBP employees were still at work, according to The Washington Post:

‘The Committee is concerned that Border Patrol agents and other CBP employees who wrote posts disparaging immigrants may still be working with immigrants and children.’

In addition, Cummings reminded Morgan that these Facebook groups had posted :

‘…racist, sexist and xenophobic comments relating to immigrants and Members of Congress.’

Then, Cumming ordered the CBP to send documents by August 14 that included:

‘…the names and titles of every CBP employee investigated, and records of any employment action taken against them.’

The representative reminded Morgan that he expected to be briefed by August 7. The CBP announced that it was:

‘…investigating 62 current employees and eight former employees for possible misconduct over their alleged participation in the Facebook groups. The groups include “Real CBP Nation” and “I’m 10-15,” which is Border Patrol code for “aliens in custody.”’

Astoundingly, the CBP was already aware of the secret Facebook groups, but it did not do anything until ProPublica published a report detailing the depth of the depravity. This outraged any number of immigrant rights advocates and legislators.

Especially egregious was the posting after Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) came to see how the immigration facilities at a Border Patrol station located in Clint, TX. One of the posts showed the representative:

‘…performing a sex act at a Border Patrol facility; another portrayed a smiling President Trump pushing the congresswoman’s face toward his lap.’

During an earlier Oversight Committee hearing, acting homeland security secretary Kevin McAleenan said this was “unacceptable.” In addition, he noted that CBP was:

‘…moving very quickly to hold people accountable for conduct that doesn’t meet our standards.’

McAleenan added that some group agents were on administrative duties, but he did not tell the committee what that meant.

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