Sen. Mike Braun, R-Indiana, told Fox News that a Biden official asked Republican senators to delete photos they took at a border facility while on tour on Friday.
Braun originally made the statements to the Washington Examiner.
“There was one of Biden’s reps. I felt sorry for the lady because she actually told me about deleting a photo, but when it came to me, all those other photos were taken, and that shows the hypocrisy,” Braun. he told the examiner at a migrant detention and processing center in Donna, Texas.
“None of us would have gone down there if they had put a muzzle on us,” Braun said, adding that the Border Patrol also asked that no photos be taken, but that “they told us because they had to.”
Braun and 18 of his Republican colleagues, including Senator Ted Cruz, R-Texas, inspected the detention center this week, which is at 700 percent capacity amid a surge in migrants.
SEN. LETTER FROM BRAUN PENS INSTITUTING AN OFFER TO VISIT THE BORDER
The photos showed children sleeping on the ground in an enclosed area.
Braun told the Examiner when the group stopped with border agents at the edge of the Rio Grande, where migrants often attempt to cross illegally. There he said that a group of “coyotes”, who guide migrants across the border for money, made fun of the group in Spanish.
“Suddenly, hearing from across the river mocking smugglers and coyotes, mostly in Spanish, telling the border guards to do what you do, let’s go,” Braun said. “That kind of impact came true in such an anecdotal way because it is a story that is a metaphor for what is happening across the border.”
GOP SENATORS MEET TRAFFICKERS, POSTER MEMBERS AT THE BORDER DURING THE NIGHT OF THE RIO GRANDE TOUR
Braun, after visiting the facility, wrote a letter to the president imploring him to visit the border.
The letter, first obtained by Fox News, includes photos Braun took Friday while visiting a U.S. Customs and Border Protection facility in Texas.
The images show migrants crammed into capsules at the processing facility and children sleeping on rugs on the floor.
“The crisis surrounding this increase makes it a moral imperative that you see firsthand what is happening, and not the sanitized version of the border tour taken by some of my colleagues in Congress,” Braun wrote. “Having personally gone this week, I can testify that it is an inhumane, unsustainable and dangerous situation.
There were more than 18,000 unaccompanied minors in the custody of Border Protection or Health and Human Services as of Thursday, according to national security records.
By law, children are not supposed to remain in processing facilities for more than 72 hours before being transferred to HHS shelters specifically designed to care for children. But the surge in migrants at the border has overwhelmed processing centers and caused delays.
“I know why President Biden doesn’t want the media here, because we have an open border,” Sen. James Lankford, R-Oklahoma, said Friday after visiting the facility.
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“If you were an unaccompanied minor, they would send you to Donna’s facility, which we went and visited. That facility is designed for 80 people in a capsule, and they had 709 people … literally wall-to-wall in each of the little Plexiglas cells they have and the people who come out into the hallway, “Lankford said.