Arguing that immigration reform should focus first on ramping up security on the nation's southern border, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) told a local radio host Thursday that undocumented immigrants from a wide variety of backgrounds were creating a multilingual mess in South Texas.
“As a matter a fact a guy told me last night, he said we’ve got people coming across our place speaking Chinese, French and basically all of the languages in the world, coming through and across our southern border,” Cornyn said during an interview with Edd Hendee of KSEV, first reported by Think Progress.
While there currently appears to be momentum in Washington for comprehensive immigration reform, many Republicans like Cornyn have argued that any discussion of an overhaul can't take place until the border has been secured. Recent data regarding border crossings and violence would suggest that the border is, in fact, more secure now than it has been in the past, though recent budget cuts due to sequestration could imperil that trend.
Cornyn was been a reliable alarmist about the state of border security. In February, he tweeted this unsourced complaint.
Friend on border sez 300 ppl coming across his property every night.And Napolitano sez border is under control?
— JohnCornyn (@JohnCornyn) February 21, 2013
Democrats responded by mocking Cornyn, asking him to identify his "mysterious friend." The senator later stood by the claim, telling the Dallas Morning News that the "anecdote is consistent with what I’m hearing from a lot of people."