Skip to main content

tv   Confirmation Hearing for Customs Border Protection Commissioner  CSPAN  October 21, 2021 6:12am-8:37am EDT

6:12 am
6:13 am
6:14 am
chief magnus: chief magnus started out in lansing, michigan with a career in public safety taking him east, west, north, and south. he would lead an agency with tens of thousands of employees, border patrol responsible for over 300 points of entry into the country, and to enforce immigration laws. the committee has a special interest in ensuring customs and border patrol's mission does not get short drifted. they'd gracefully and working to stay ahead of trade sheets, it is absolutely treated -- customs and border patrol is right at the heart about challenge. too often in the past, specifically during the trump
6:15 am
administration, trades enforcement has been a secondary issue. the committee has worked hard over the past year to give customs and border patrol fresh and modern trade enforcement tools. the goal is to help our trade and forces work faster and communicate more closely with businesses and other organizations. it can spot the trade cheats and they are definitely undercutting american workers and undercutting american jobs. both make a big difference over the slower, updated approach of previous decades. we all understand there is room for improvement so this committee will look to continue to look for ways and discuss this with the chief to strengthen our trade enforcement even further. one issue posing a serious danger to american values and our jobs is the use of force labor in china and elsewhere. it is an important practice. modern-day slavery.
6:16 am
it is a big part of what needs to be an all-out effort to and the modern-day slavery. it it allowed products made by forced labor to be imported to the country. senator brown and i wrote the wall to close that loophole in 2016 it. it united states took action to block the import of tomatoes picked by slave labor in western china. there are many more areas and industries in which force labor continues to be an ongoing threat to american workers. in addition to goods coming from china. senator brown and i are concerned about the import of cocoa which may be produced with force labor. customs and border control not only --it demands remediation where appropriate and forces forced labor products entering the country. this is a hard job.
6:17 am
it requires quick action, lots of discussion and communication and ongoing ways american's insist, human rights, and organizations. we look forward to hearing from chief magnus on the subject today. immigration is not explicitly in finance committee's jurisdiction. it is sure to come up today. the trump administration made it faster -- fashionable to believe in enforcing immigration laws required abusing immigrants at the border. recently the american people saw images of what that mindset looks like in the real world. it is absolutely, unquestionably wrong. i started this proposition and you have i -- and i have talked about this. with the proposition that enforcing our immigration laws and treating people humanely, those two goals are not mutually exclusive. we can do both and insist on
6:18 am
both good embracing immigration and of silent symptoms -- seekers are not just -- i appreciate the discussions we have on the matter. one last point on the issue that dates back to before chief magnus's nomination in the summer 2020. the trump administration ploy to federal troops in cities including my hometown of portland. i was hearing from schools like the cottonwood school in portland where they got up in the morning and saw teargas canisters in their sandbox and clearly, there were some major abuses of power at the time. for many months, i demanded review of policy regarding the use of chemical munitions at schools. there has been significant progress on these issues. i want to thank the secretary of new york for that progress -- secretary mayorkas for that progress and i work -- look forward to working with him on the subject because my neighbors are still reeling from the harm
6:19 am
the trump administration inflicted on them. chief, i want to congratulate you on your nomination. thank you for being here. we will discuss today with my friend senator crapo. sen. crapo: mr. magnus, welcome. u.s. customs and border protection, cbp, is the nation's largest federal law enforcement agency. its responsibilities are staggering. test with facilitating lawful international trade and travel. the united states is a leader in international commerce in that leadership depends on ensuring the lawful trade and visits go smoothly. it requires we safeguard from terrorists, drug traffickers, and transnational criminals. in 2020, a year where the pandemic retailed -- curtailed trade and travel, the 63,000 men and women on an average day
6:20 am
processed 650,000 passengers and 77,000 containers, arrested 39 criminals at u.s. ports of entry, seized 3600 pounds of drugs, caught $3.6 million of drugs that entrenched international property rights, and discovered 250 tests that could cause untold damage to u.s. farmers. the cbp's work is not just point of entry inspections. cbp also undertakes sophisticated investigations to ensure custom laws are far less properly enforced, including identifying actors that smuggle goods with forced labor into the united states. deliberate evasion of anti-dumping and countervailing duties not only undercuts revenue owed to the government. it prevents our workers and
6:21 am
businesses from her unfair prey -- trade practices. lumber producers in my home state of article -- idaho rely on those measures to combat unfair trade and those measures are ensured to be effective. cdp maintains international operations and operates attache offices in 23 countries. this container security initiative screens containers posing a risk of terrorism at foreign ports before they are placed on vessels destined for the united states. through this program, cdp can prescreen 80% of containerized cargo into the united states. overseeing all this work would normally export -- require skill, experience, and judgment and extraordinary levels but these are not normal times. i am referring to the heartbreaking situation on our southern border. in august, cbp had over 200,000
6:22 am
encounters on the southwest border. significantly higher than the preceding august that had only 50,000 encounters, which itself was down from 60,000 in august of 2019. in fiscal year 2021, there were 1.4 million encounters, even without accounting for september numbers that are not yet known, which is more than double the 458 thousand encounters in fiscal year 2020. once in office, the administration's initial approach was to downplay or worse undermine its own tools to address it. it eliminated the successful remaining mexico policy known as the migrant protection protocols. this program wisely required migrants to remain in mexico while their planes were decided. the sudden determination of the program is only brash but as confirmed by the supreme court in august contrary to law. moreover, the men and women of
6:23 am
cbp have been left demoralized and adrift by the administration's approach. indeed, the president of the federal law enforcement officers association has written that the administration needs to stop blaming the federal law enforcement officers at the border who are over task, under resourced, and underappreciated. it is the lack of a coherent strategy that escalated the crisis of the border, not the border officers. . in sum, the crisis, and that is what it is, is absolutely unacceptable. this committee must ensure cbp is headed by someone with the requisite ability and commitment to end it as soon as possible. failing to ensure such would prolong the tragedy. accordingly, i look forward to the hearing and the responses to our questions. 1 sen. wyden: thank you, senator crapo. i look forward to working with you.
6:24 am
senator sinema is here. senator kelly is here. supported strongly by both united states senators. we will begin with sen. sinema. sen. sinema: i appreciate the opportunity to attend today's finance committee herring and introduce an exceptional nominee to be commissioner of cbp. i am pleased to be joined by my friend and colleague senator kelly who will also offer introductory comments. chris magnus has been a police chief in north dakota, richmond, california, and my hometown of tucson, arizona, and that is how i know him. his background is an exceptional professional on the north and south western borders has prepared him well to help cbp overcome and meet the challenges at our borders. when i judge a border initiative resolution, i examine three questions. will this provision help secure the border?
6:25 am
will it protect our communities? will it ensure migrants are treated fairly and humanely? that is why i hope he will have the support of this committee and the senate. as we all know, there have been significant problems along the border in the past year. during that time, the city of tucson has been on the front lines of responding to and managing the ongoing migrant crisis. tucson city officials and ngos have teamed up with the department of homeland security to manage high numbers of asylum-seekers and other migrants arriving in arizona. this has been a successful partnership that has helped migrants and has protected our community. chief magnus's role in the partnership shows he understands the current issues of the border. he collaborates effectively with various stakeholders to tackle complicated problems and he is ready to get to work to solve the issues. chief magnus also understands we need to secure the border. this is a law-enforcement challenge that starts at ports
6:26 am
of entry, where most of narcotics on the southwest border into the nation. cbp needs a commissioner who understands how to thwart criminalize networks while allowing for the efficient flow of legitimate trade and travel. arizona and tucson is a critical link in the flow of commerce along the southwest border. chief magnus has built great relation to trips through arizona and i'm certain he will bring that consensusbuilding to his approach to cdp. that is what we need at the border. our nation faces challenges at the border of the only way we can solve them is by working together. chief magnus has shown the tenacity and ability to do exactly that at every step of his career. since he has moved up from a police officer in michigani havl step up again when he is confirmed as commissioner in cbp. it is critical the cbp have a
6:27 am
senate confirmed leadership position. today's hearing is important toward that doll -- goal, which i hope all of us share. having someone like him meeting cbp is the best way to better secure the border, better protect our communities, and ensure migrants are treated fairly and humanely. thank you again for the opportunity to speak with the committee today. 1 sen. wyden: chie, you have the support of 100% of arizona's united states senators and we will hear from other one. sen. kelly: thank you, mr. chairman. chairman mining -- wyden, reiki member crapo, thank you for holding this hearing. happy to be here today with sen. sinema to introduce tucson police chief chris magnus, who has been nominated to be the commissioner of customs and border protection as of southern arizona and. -- arizonan, she knows the importance of this post.
6:28 am
arizona shares a 373 mile border with mexico. arizonans know that too often, washington is far removed from this reality. trying to secure the border and fix our broken immigration laws without knowing what is happening on the ground. washington has failed arizonans on this issue for decades. it has eroded trust in the system. that is right we welcome the nomination of chief magnus, a tusconan and law enforcement leader, to head customs and border protection because we need a smart approach of the border that is humane, orderly, and secure. we need someone at the helm with the experience and perspectives to implement those solutions. as we continue to overcome the covid-19 pandemic and work to rebuild our economy, it is critical our trade and tourism
6:29 am
economies recover as well. we need a leader at cbp who can undertake the task of ensuring we have the resources, training, and capacity at our borders to process increased tourism and cargo, which are border communities and businesses depend on. finally, cbp officers have a difficult job. there are often stretched thin and asked to work long hours in difficult conditions. i appreciate their service. it is critical for arizona and for cbp to have senate confirmed leadership committed to supporting officers and carrying out its mission. over his 42 year career in law enforcement, chief magnus served as the chief of police in three separate police departments across the country. it as a son of two police,
6:30 am
myself, i have respected his approach to public service and his leadership of the tucson police department. it is clear that he values establishing meaningful connections with folks he works with and serves regardless of their backgrounds. he has done this in tucson, working with and earning the respect of leaders of different political parties and from different parts of the community. in southern arizona, we have got into no chief magnus as a committed public servant with the great and experience to take on this job. i know that through his -- thiss committee and the senate will see that, as well. when he is confirmed, we look forward to continuing to work with him to secure our border in arizona and support the men and women of cbp. thank you. sen. wyden: i know both of my colleagues have busy days so you
6:31 am
can consider yourself excused and thank you very much for being here to launch mr. magnus's nomination hearing. chief, we will now hear from you and obligatory questions and that we will ask. please go ahead and i appreciate any conversation we recently had an look forward to your remarks. chief magnus: chairman wyden, member crapo, and members of the committee, it is an honor and privilege to be sitting before you today as president biden's nominee to serve as commissioner of customs and border protection. i am grateful for the support of the president and secretary mayorkas. originally created in 1789, in order to pay our country's revolutionary war debts, cbp's modern-day responsibilities
6:32 am
facilitating immigration, protecting our nation's border security, promoting trade and travel, and more, are as critical now as they were in the early days following our natio.s cbp is a key part of the immigration system that has welcomed so many families to the country including my own. my father was an english and art history professor who emigrated to the u.s. from norway in 1921. my mother, a pianist and homemaker, was the daughter of german immigrants. i have two sisters, carol and beth, and a brother, gerhart. my husband, terrence cheung, with me today, immigrated to the united states from hong kong with his wonderful mother clara, who retired after running her own small business for three decades. terrence has been a journalist, chief of staff for a mayor and super -- county supervisor and
6:33 am
works for the arizona superior court in pima county. i could not ask for a more supportive partner. as a career public safety officer, there would be no greater privilege then to lead one of the largest federal law enforcement agencies in the country. i think young man in lansing, michigan, i put myself through college where i earned degrees in criminal justice and labor relations from michigan state university. i worked first as a 911 dispatcher, a paramedic, and a deputy sheriff. i then came up to the lansing, police department ranks, ultimately obtaining the rank of captain. my 41 year career in public safety has afforded me the opportunity to work and communities of all sizes and types and different geographic areas of the country, each with its own unique needs and challenges and all of them provided opportunities to learn,
6:34 am
innovate, and work with talented, dedicated people. i know too well the impact trade and its economic effects can have on american communities. as a police officer in lansing, i saw firsthand what happened when the u.s. auto industry drug old during the 1980's and 1990's. today, thanks to bipartisan efforts to intrude -- improve our trade policies, auto plants in american cities not only do business on a level playing field but have also been able to expand and flourish. manufacturing workers throughout the united states can now be assured of more pay equity with mexican and canadian workers. i am acutely aware that cbt is just cbp's role in enforcing trade law goes beyond the manufacturing sector. if confirmed to lead this agency, i will work with this
6:35 am
committee and with congress to protect intellectual property, u.s. agriculture, and the many products that americans rely on. addressing forced labor would also be one of my high priorities. while it is hard to imagine anything more antithetical to our core values as americans, eliminating forced labor is more than philosophical undertaking. it is a moral imperative. full force to laws must be given to laws that punish modern-day slavery while facilitating trade for companies who do business responsibly. i live in a city close to the u.s. border with mexico and consider myself lucky to have visited those borders many times. it is essential to recognize what we think of as the border is not homogenous and there is no one solution that will provide us with perfect border security.
6:36 am
if confirmed, i will do what i've always done in my professional career, which is to uphold the law. if i will expect, without exception, all agency personnel be conscientious, fair, and humane when enforcing the law. more than a few colleagues have asked me what are you thinking. why would i choose to take on this important and challenging responsibility of leading cbp at this moment? here's my answer, the same answer i gave when i started my public safety career in 1979. i want to make a difference. cbp is a proud agency with the mission that is vital to this country. i believe by working with congress, the men and women who served cbp and its public and private sector partners that we can build upon its many strengths to make the agency better. i pride myself on being
6:37 am
pragmatic and bipartisan problem solver and the principles that have guided me, integrity, accountability, caring, and results. i care about ideas, not ideology. i foster continuous improvement and digging to get the work done. if confirmed, my pledge to this committee and its members is simple. i will have an unwavering commitment to serving the american people and will lead with intellectual humility and enthusiasm everyday. thank you, again, for their opportunity to appear before you today and for your consideration of my nomination to this critical role. i look forward to your questions. 1 thank you. sen. wyden: i heard her say your friends asked you what were you thinking when you decided to be the president's nominee/ i said t myself i hope he does not shut his binder and walk out
6:38 am
because we are glad you're here. we have obligatory questions. is there anything you are aware of that might present a conflict of interest with the duties in the office to which you have been nominated? sen. sinema: there is not. sen. wyden:sen. wyden: do you know of any reason that would prevent you from discharging the opera good -- chief magnus: there is not. sen. wyden: do you agree to respond to summons to appear and testify before duly constituted committees and the congress if you are confirmed? chief magnus: yes, mr. chairman, i do. sen. wyden: do you commit to providing a response to questions addressed to you by any senator? chief magnus: i do. sen. wyden: i will begin with a couple of questions and yield to my colleague, senator crapo. you have a significant enforcement role, particularly on the southern border.
6:39 am
ports of entry and you have a big challenge from a humanitarian standpoint, given what has happened within countries in the western hemisphere. we all have seen the images of border patrol agents expelling the migrants from the border and nothing about those images is acceptable or appropriate. during my visit to the southern border, i saw and we talked about this. border patrol agents unable to interpret the immigration laws on the books correctly. my question to you is how will you go about making sure that the agents understand the immigration and refugee laws on the books and number two, that they act humanely when enforcing them? chief magnus: thank you very much for the question. i agree that border patrol agents and for that matter all
6:40 am
members of cbp have significant enforcement roles and that has to be a balance of law enforcement and keeping up with community -- humanity. that is an expectation my officers have have -- had wherever i've worked. training has to go back to the academy level where people start. i think you can make a credible case it goes all the way back to the traits and characteristics you look for in the people you h ire. if i was fortunate to be confirmed to this position, i would want to look all the way back to that age to make sure we are looking for people who have the right qualities and skills to be the best possible members of cbp, that they receive the necessary training to do their jobs and the necessary supervision to help them move forward with the good that is
6:41 am
exactly the approach i have always taken. sen. wyden: i want you to note we will be following up in this area as -- area. as i touched on, i don't believe enforcement of the laws and treating people humanely is mutually exclusive. we will have to insist on both and will have further discussions. let's talk about the supply chain. the backlog of enormous volumes for american businesses raising cost for consumers and long waits. this cbp x-ray machines and the biden administration has engaged in public-private partnership to keep u.s. ports open 20 47 to address shipping issues. we want to have specifically -- asked specifically about your role in this because it is clear to me you will not be in a position to deal with all aspects of the supply chain backlog but improved processing
6:42 am
of shipments through ports is part of your portfolio. that is where you are improving processing shipments through ports are in your portfolio. how would you go about doing that? chief magnus: thank you for the question. i could not agree more that preserving and reinforcing america's supply chain is one of our top priorities and must be one of our top priorities, something i care deeply about. as we approach the holidays, we see the impact of supply chain that is struggling right now so although cbp is only one actor at the ports and certainly not the only entity that has responsibility for the movement
6:43 am
of goods through the ports, it plays an important role. i would want to make sure, if confirmed, the agency as the appropriate staffing at the ports, that we are working with the president's guidance around ours and different ways the ports are operational. i believe continuing to develop an modernized the resources cbp has such as base, very important moving forward. there is work to be done to maintain that an modernized and --modernized at and get it into the cloud. these will help us in the short run and long run but all important. sen. wyden: i want to talk you about a passport security.
6:44 am
as you know, general county office identified a security gap at the border. they lacked the software necessary to verify the data's board -- stored -- data had not been forged. the agency ignored the report and we put pressure on the agency well before your time, urging them to address this ball nobility and the agency began to pilot the necessary software. important -- unfortunately, the software pilot ended and there is no fix on the border. will you commit to working with us to address this finding and provide cb's p agents with the necessary tools to spot high-tech, forged passports used by spies and criminals? chief magnus: thank you for the question.
6:45 am
this is a source of frustration and so many organizations have dealt with this over and over again where this pilot program seems to somehow never be put into full force or appropriately implemented. what you have described is a system that makes imminent sense. it is absolutely something i would pledge to complete because we need this as part of national security. sen. wyden: lets you and i talk about a timetable for it because i think this is the tool that increasingly will be used by people like spies, criminals, and people who threaten the country. sen. crapo: thank you very much. mr. magness, senator wyden's question on the supply chain and ports was my first question so i appreciate his raising it in your answer. i will move on to immigration enforcement issues.
6:46 am
i'm going to move on to some immigration enforcement issues. one of the president's first actions on taking office was to inexplicably announced a moratorium on deportations, including those subject to final border removal. this was acting inconsistently according to the courts with an -- with immigration law and though the biden administration subsequently agreed to allow the moratorium to lapse, it was deeply troubling. if the president doesn't like the law, he needs to work with congress. my question to you is will you commit to enforcing the immigration law at the border, including using the resources available to cbp? mr. magnus: ranking member crapo, thank you for that question. i agree, we have some significant challenges at the border. the numbers are very high and it
6:47 am
is something that has to be addressed. clearly we have a broken system. so yes, senator, i will commit to enforcing the law. sen. crapo: thank you. at the border, the cbp does not routinely test migrants for covid prior to their release into the united states. officials in the city of mcallen, texas, said that 7000 of the nearly 88,000 migrants released by cbp into the city since february have tested positive for covid-19. do you think we should test migrants for covid-19 before releasing them into the cities? mr. magnus: senator, yes, i absolutely do and appreciate where you are coming from with this question. because as a chief in tucson we have also experienced similar challenges and it puts a great deal of pressure not only on the ngo's but also on the dedicated men and women of the border
6:48 am
patrol, and for that matter, i.c.e., who have to interact with these folks. it's a humanitarian matter but also a public health matter and i would totally commit to that. sen. crapo: thank you. next, just two weeks ago cbp deployed what was called simplified arrival at the pedestrian border crossings in sweetgrass and eastport, idaho. simplified arrival allows biometric facial technology to replace document checks normally used for admission into the united states. it's good that we are seeing more of this technology for the arrivals of visitors, but what about when visitors exit? a major source of illegal immigration is visa over stays. should we deploy biometric tools for when people exit and do you see this as a priority issue?
6:49 am
mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. the issue of biometrics holds a great deal of potential throughout law enforcement. it is something that has to be put into place with caution, understandably, as there are always concerns about how the data is stored, for how long, the manner in which it is used. but if confirmed, this is something i want to pursue further, look into more carefully and i would like to work with you and others on, those who are interested in the issue. sen. crapo: thank you. as i indicated, senator wyden covered my supply chain issues so i will stop there and we will go to the next senator, senator stabenow, who i believe is with us virtually on the web. senator stabenow? sen. stabenow: you and chairman wyden for this important hearing. welcome, chief magnus. it is good to see you again.
6:50 am
i appreciated our chance to talk, not only about the job for which you are, which you are before us, but also about growing up in michigan. so, i appreciate the fact that lansing, where i live, was your birthplace. welcome, it's nice to see you. you have a very challenging task ahead of you, obviously, and the many ways in which you impact the economy, our people, or safety. it's a very important position and if confirmed you will certainly have a lot on your plate. you will be responsible for this -- the smooth facilitation of international trade and the enforcement of our trade laws to make sure that our workers and businesses can compete on a level playing field and be involved in the efforts with the administration to repair the
6:51 am
broken immigration system and create more fair and humane treatment of asylum-seekers and immigrants. i want to first start with something very specific to michigan. as you know, we have the largest northern border crossing, detroit into canada. we actually have two. the ambassador bridge in detroit in the bluewater bridge here and did you know that construction is underway for a second international crossing in detroit, the gordie howe international bridge is expected to be done in 2024. the bluewater bridge in port huron is in the mender of -- the middle of a project that has taken too long, too many stops and starts on this project and it has been extremely frustrating for the community and it is essential for the community that this project is completed as quickly as possible.
6:52 am
and cbp's support will be absolutely critical to get that done. if confirmed, will you commit to working with our local communities in detroit, with my office to ensure these projects continue to move forward? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. as we discussed, i think you appreciate my concern for these ports of entry and the very important role that cbp plays in managing them. i know that these ports of entry are vital to the american workers, to the american businesses. so if confirmed, i would absolutely want to visit the bluewater bridge port. there would be a number of other ports i would want to visit as well.
6:53 am
sen. stabenow: thank you. well, we would welcome you. let me take on my additional time to take on my agricultural role as we play a critical role in protecting farmers, consumers, and the environment from invasive pests and diseases, working closely with the department of agriculture, animal plant and health inspection services. in michigan alone, agriculture is our second largest industry and producers faced increased threats every day, from cherry growers battling the damage of the spotted wing to the other -- the pork producers who are threatened by african swine fever, which was found in the atmosphere for the first time in decades, to the emerald ash board that has devastated the forest. would you commit to being a strong partner with the fta to -- fda to protect producers and on the latest point, let me say that senators peters, cornyn,
6:54 am
roberts and i, are working -- worked to secure passage of a bill signed into law early last year to address an ongoing shortage of inspectors and canine units, and i wonder what your strategy would be to make sure that we have enough agriculture specialists to monitor these challenges. mr. magnus: thank you for the question and i'm grateful i didn't have to pronounce that term you were referring to. yes, i appreciate the importance of the usda inspectors and the critical role they play working with other cbp personnel. so, ensuring that there is efficient staffing of personnel and really, that the role is appreciated, i don't think it's as fully understood by as many as it needs to be, so this is something i wouldn't want to -- i would want to work with you and others on.
6:55 am
sen. stabenow: thank you very much. thank you, mr. chairman. sen. wyden: next we go to senator grassley. sen. grassley: my questions are relevant to someone who has been nominated for a senior leadership position within an agency tasked with securing the border and enforcing the our immigration laws. do you believe that illegally crossing the border between ports of entry should remain a crime under federal law? mr. magnus: i do. sen. grassley: do you agree that sanctuary jurisdictions and localities that refuse to comply with ice detainment requests are an impediment to federal immigration law? mr. magnus: i think it's very important that local communities do work with federal agencies, including i.c.e. and the border
6:56 am
patrol. i appreciate your question. i think there have been some legitimate issues raised about the risk that communities may be in when they are forced into -- when they are enforcing detainers as opposed to making arrests. we have been advised in several of the communities i have worked in by our legal advisors and city attorneys that we should have an arrest warrant to be holding individuals for i.c.e. sen. grassley: what are your views on the notice to report that has been implemented by cbp in recent months? mr. magnus: senator, i appreciate the question and obviously, the better practice would be to have individuals be noticed to appear as opposed to noticed to report.
6:57 am
i understand that, because we have not had enough asylum officers or immigration judges, and that's not just recently, that really has been over the last four years, and also because we have some very long wait for people to come before a proceeding, we have a real challenge on our hands. so, i think this is something that congress will play an important role in helping to fix and i think this is definitely what we have now, a broken system. sen. grassley: on a legal point on the same matter, what in your view is a statutory basis for a notice of report process? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question and it isn't -- it is something i am not knowledgeable about at this time but would want to learn more about. i can tell you this, however, if confirmed, i believe our primary goal has to be to enforce the law and i would make that
6:58 am
commitment to you. sen. grassley: since you felt you were not able to that -- responded that -- respond to that question without knowing the basis, would you respond to that question in writing about the statutory basis for a notice to report? mr. magnus: senator, i would be happy to do that. sen. grassley: do you believe it's necessary to maintain the public-health expulsion border patrol rule particularly as 16% of the people crossing the border are positive? mr. magnus: as i think i indicated in my opening statement, as a paramedic for 10 years, public health has always been one of my top concerns and because of that i feel it's absolutely imperative that we do everything possible to stop the spread of covid. title 42 is a cdc authority and
6:59 am
it helps, i think it helps with this, cbp certainly has a responsibility with implementing this policy. but here is the bottom line, senator, i will always comply with the law, even as it changes, perhaps, regarding title 42, no matter what the courts decide. sen. grassley: what is your view on the humanitarian exceptions and the extent to which they should be utilized? mr. magnus: i appreciate the question, but again, this is an area that i think, coming in from the outside, i would need to learn more about. i am not aware of as much information as i would like to be to be able to answer that question at this time. sen. grassley: ok, my last question will have to be this. in regard to the port of oregon attack on the federal courthouse, you issued a tweet
7:00 am
in "the new york times" that said this activity, i won't even dignify it by calling it policing, it's an affront to constitutional professional law enforcement. you then questioned the officers not having visible nametags and using unmarked vehicles. was it wrong for the federal government to send those officers to protect the portland federal courthouse in july of 2020? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. i think this really comes down to an issue of was the governor of the state of oregon and america portland involved in this decision? i think that is very important, especially given the fact that any federal law enforcement in order to be effective would need
7:01 am
to be seen as legitimate by working with state and local law enforcement. i do, as a police chief of over 20 to 21 years, has significant problems with the idea that police officers would be out there on any sort of patrol or in any other contact with the public without having physical -- visible patches or badges. i think that is a serious problem and one that i couldn't endorse. sen. wyden: the time of my colleague has expired. senator menendez? senator menendez: i was deeply treatment of haitian migrants at the border, substandard conditions at the del rio encampment. if confirmed, will you in providing members of congress with regular updates on the status of migrants encountered at the border? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. and like you, i found those images troubling, but i also
7:02 am
believe, and i certainly learned this during my career in policing, that a full and thorough investigation is necessary before any final conclusions are drawn. that said, i would totally support keeping this committee, any member of the senate, abreast of the progress associated with the investigation. sen. menendez: dhs reported a failure to share important intelligence left intelligence officials unprepared to adequately prepare for the large influx of haitian migrants in september. if confirmed, what will you do in your role as commissioner to address these operational missteps? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. we can always do better and a part of doing better means we take a thorough and really thoughtful look back at how a
7:03 am
situation was handled, what we can learn from it and what we want to do to perhaps be more prepared in working with other federal agencies, working with other state and local agencies, including the ngo's. looking at how we anticipate searches coming across the border. these are all things i think we can plan for better going forward and it is something i would commit to doing to the best of my ability. sen. menendez: well, one of the things i would hope you would do upon confirmation is making sure we have a seamless horizon of intelligence so that we can know what we are facing and can prepare for it. in that regard, dhs officials are tracking several groups of haitian migrants, including more than 20,000 migrants currently residing in columbia, who may also make their journey to the southwest border.
7:04 am
if confirmed, what measures to ensure the agency is prepared to handle any future influxes of migrants at the border? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. i think the issue of preparation is critical. one of the i would look forward to doing would be building a -- the strongest possible relations with my counterparts and colleagues so that we could have an ongoing line of communication that allows mexico to help play a role in addressing those issues along with us to be able to share intelligence as it becomes available and to again be working at the state and local level, whether it is preparing or being more nimble with soft sided structures or having adequate personnel available. i'm encouraged that the border patrol is bringing on board
7:05 am
border protection coordinators. i think they have brought on about 400 of them at this point, which would make processing of individuals something that is much more efficient than what we have now. there are a lot of steps when it comes to preparation and if confirmed, there is plenty to learn. i would want to dig in by talking not only to the sector chiefs and others in top leadership positions, but also those that the line level, the rank-and-file. sen. menendez: appreciate that. one of the challenges that may be above your pay grade would be instability in haiti. we are bound to face continued challenges. in the previous administration the department made agreements
7:06 am
with the government of mexico and governments throughout central america. would you commit to keeping this committee as well as the senate foreign relations committee informed of bilateral agreements around cooperation? mr. magnus: yes, i would. sen. menendez: finally, one of the jobs you would have would be to safeguard americans from the importation of counterfeit products. if confirmed, will you commit to taking steps to support our many anti-counterfeit measures? the bridal industry is one of -- one where the dresses are made for the people in this most significant day of their lives, they buy something they think is going to be what they saw at the store in new jersey, they get something with a quality
7:07 am
that suggests something different and was far different from what they got, but it is too late and they appear to be the same exact as that which would be purchased domestically. there's a lot of counterfeiting going on in that regard and with -- i would hope you would make a commitment to strengthening our counterfeit measures. mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. the whole area of e-commerce is something i'm particularly interested in. you are right to remind us that these are dangerous items, in many cases, ranging from pharmaceuticals all the way through to flammable mattresses. e-commerce is an area i'm excited delving into further and it obviously also involves the theft of intellectual property. we are certainly talking about more than just counterfeit luxury items. these are things that are
7:08 am
potentially dangerous and are a ripoff to the american public. mr. magnus: the time of my colleague has expired. making an important point and as the author with senator mccain of the original internet tax legislation put forth, i look forward to working with senator menendez. senator cornyn? senator cornyn: i enjoyed our conversation a few months ago. when you are first nominated. -- were first nominated. have you had a chance to review the guidelines that were issued on september 30 by secretary mayorkas? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. at this point i am still familiarizing myself with some of that information but i want to become very familiar with it. if i am able to move forward. sen. cornyn: were you aware that as a result of these guidelines, the department of homeland security will no longer detain
7:09 am
and deport someone who has entered the country illegally, if that is their only offense? were you aware of that? >> i have heard some information along those lines. >> i think the secretary made that statement on television more than one time. are you familiar with any other area of law enforcement,, given your extensive career, where the enforcer of the law decides which laws they will enforce? mr. magnus: well, senator, actually there is quite a bit of discretion in policing and there are decisions made based on the resources available about which laws will be enforced and how they will be enforced. this has especially been the case during covid, when the ability to even put people into
7:10 am
jail safely -- sen. cornyn: so a police officer or i.c.e. agent can decide which laws to enforce as a matter of discretion? mr. magnus: senator, there certainly are circumstances where police officers are trained and in fact for it is -- in fact encouraged to use good discretion in the manner in which they enforce laws. sen. cornyn: are you familiar with the concept of pull and push factors when it comes to illegal immigration? for example, the push factors of poverty, violence, people wanting to come to the united states for a better life, but also the pull factors, including the perception that there will be no consequences associated with illegal immigration? do you agree with me that the decision by secretary mayorkas to no longer detain or deport people that enter the country illegally is a pull factor that
7:11 am
encourages more people to make that long, dangerous trip? mr. magnus: as i think we discussed, i think there are both strong push and pull factors out there. sen. cornyn: i'm just asking about the pull factors. would you agree with me that a policy of nonenforcement is a pull factor encouraging more illegal immigration? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. i think that there are many factors that contribute to this. sen. cornyn: is that one of them? mr. magnus: it is one part of it. yes, sir. sen. cornyn: ok, thank you. you are a border state officer and chief. i know you know a lot about the border, although i will tell you in my experience with senator sinema flying to tucson, it's a much different situation in the rio grande valley, for example, but one of the things we share in common is that the cartels
7:12 am
have figured out how to overwhelm our border security, including our border patrol, and as a result of the fact that unaccompanied children, families, and others that require additional processing and care, when the border patrol leaves the front lines in some sectors in texas, for example, as many as 40% of the border patrol have left the front lines of border security and our back -- and are back processing unaccompanied children, it leaves a four lane highway for the drug cartels to smuggle drugs into the united states? mr. magnus: senator, i agree, even with the border not being homogenous, i think there is no question in some areas more than others like in the rio grande valley like you described, we absolutely do need more border patrol agents out on the line doing what they were trained to do and this is again one of the
7:13 am
reasons i'm encouraged by having border process coordinators on board who can relieve some of those agents so that they can get back to what should be their primary duty. >> it is sort of like the cartels are playing three-dimensional chess while we play checkers. this is their business model. last year alone over 90,000 americans died of drug overdoses and most of those drugs came across the southern border, as you know. thank you, mr. chairman. >> i think my colleague. next is senator thune. senator thune: you served 10 years in the california bay area next to san francisco, a well-known sanctuary city that flouts immigration law and
7:14 am
refuses to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement agents. if confirmed, you will oversee the enforcement of immigration law at our borders. do you support sanctuary cities and what message do they send to those seeking to enter the united states illegally? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. as a chief for two decades, my priority has always been public safety. i appreciate how decisions around sanctuary cities are ultimately political decisions, but as a police chief, i'm certainly in this position where if confirmed, my first and primary obligation is to follow the law. that is what i has always done in the past and that is what i would commit to doing going forward. sen. thune: the biden
7:15 am
administration is issuing these so-called notices to report and leaked documents show that tens of thousands of documents have been it'll -- admitted to the united states with few requirements other than a check in with customs and immigration enforcement whenever and wherever they reach their destination in the states. do you believe the lax enforcement of immigration laws intensified those pull factors for immigrants or migrants seeking entry into the united states? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. as discussed, the issue of notice to appear is something we want to achieve in any manner we can. certainly with our different agencies working together, by having more asylum officers and immigration judges, this is not
7:16 am
a new challenge in many ways. it has been true in multiple administrations and is going to take for the most part a congressional fix because we really do have a broken system and unfortunately there continues to be very long waits for court dates in order to get the people appropriately processed. so, until those things can be resolved i fear we will continue to be in a very difficult situation. sen. thune: the system is broken, everyone would acknowledge that. it's a staggering, frankly, just disintegration of the border, really, for all intents and purposes, describing this as an -- it has been described as an open border, which creates all kinds of bad things, bad things can happen in this country, the
7:17 am
wrong types of incentives. this issue of not enforcing immigration laws that already exist, to me that's a major part of that. i understand your suggestion that we need to fix a broken immigration system but we do have laws on the books that are not being enforced and i'm trying to ask you if you think lax enforcement of those laws intensifies the pull factor. people come here -- people respond to incentives. it's that simple, and if the incentives suggest that you can come here illegally and there is no consequence to that, i think more people will come here illegally. would you not agree? mr. magnus: senator, i agree that enforcing the law is necessary and appropriate and the numbers are high. as a law enforcement official i pledge to enforce the law.
7:18 am
sen. thune: just very quickly, i -- because my time is about up. as you know the supply chain issue, it is under unprecedented strain. we have got agricultural producers across the country, including my home state of south dakota, they continue to harvest the crops and as commissioner, how would you work with ports and stakeholders to improve fluidity and resolve the issue and perhaps you could quickly touch on how a some of these union rules play into that and are helping to these systemic delays. mr. magnus: senator, i couldn't agree more that the supply chain especially at the time we are in right now is critical. addressing the movement of goods through ports in any way possible to expedite that is something that is going to be very important.
7:19 am
obviously this is going to require working with port directors and will require close relationships and continued work with groups, business groups both large and small. i don't think there are simple solutions, but if confirmed in this position, cbp is going to continue to work very hard around the issue. sen. thune: thank you, mr. chairman. sen. cardin: thank you for your public service and your willingness to take on this extremely challenging position. i have listened to your responses to the questions in regard to border enforcement and i agree that we need to enforce our laws. i have also heard your response in regard to the manner show up
7:20 am
-- manner of how we enforce our laws. desperate people show up at the borders. many have legitimate claims in entering the united states. we have families that show up on our borders. we have unaccompanied minors that show up on our borders. i would like to give you a chance to explain how you would balance enforcement of our law with values, which america has been the leader of the world during a time where we have had more displaced people than we have had since world war ii. can you explain to me your personal philosophy on balancing enforcement of laws with enforcement of our values? mr. magnus: senator, thank you very much for that question. even as we spoke about the numbers being high, there's no question that we have to meet the challenge of asylum issues as a nation and also the security of our borders.
7:21 am
i think that can be done in a manner that is, yes, absolutely more efficient. we can do a better job with how individuals are processed. but the key to this is that it is done humanely. i don't believe we have to sacrifice efficiency for humanity. so, i think humanity has to be a part of the discussion. again, early and often throughout the careers of cbp members, this is something we talked a lot about. in policing. we do our job enforcing the law, but how we engage with the public, even the public that we may be arresting, that defines us as professionals and it is something we have a moral obligation to do. sen. cardin: thank you for that response. i also heard you respond to the need for training that i
7:22 am
strongly agree with. a lot of times those funds become difficult and part of our responsibility is to make sure you have adequate resources. but i want to deal with one of the major challenges we have had in policing in recent decades, discriminatory profiling. it really turns communities against law enforcement when we use discriminatory profiling. it's inefficient, it's wrong. if you have specific information , the identifiers are important. to characterize individuals by race, religion, or other discriminatory issues is just wrong and i would like again get as to how you would proceed with training to make sure that the agency to eat doesn't use discriminatory profiling as a method of enforcement.
7:23 am
mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. i could not agree more, profiling is wrong. this is an area where, yes, training is critical. it has to involve more than just a policy on a page.8hñim there has to be scenario-based training and discussions. and then people have to see, as they work their way through their careers, this is something modeled appropriately by their supervisors and others. i think there are ways to train more effectively, involving a -- that involve including the community and training, making some of these things real for the people who have been profiled, having them share their experiences. these are things we have done in departments i have worked in.
7:24 am
i think we can address this issue. sen. cardin: regarding border enforcement of trade, whether it is anti-dumping or countervailing duties, child labor issues, intellectual property violations, we need to have a working relationship with the agency and how we enforce trade laws. i really want to under score the importance of working together to develop a strategy. i would welcome your recommendations to our committee to see what tools you need to better enforce trade laws. >> senator harper, i believe, is online. sen. harper: thank you for being
7:25 am
willing to serve with us in this role and think for your patience in waiting for the hearing. like a lot of my colleagues who have been trained as leaders since childhood, boy scouts on patrol, navy, i will say leadership is one of the most important ingredients in a large or small entity, business, private sector, government, one of the most important of all. if i'm not mistaken, cbp has lacked a senate confirmed leader since april of 2019, almost 2.5 years. that said, as you know, cbp is the nation's largest law enforcement agency. should you be confirmed, you will be managing those men and women and your leadership will be central not only to the workforce, but to the success of the department as a whole. to that end, can you lead us off with sharing how your experience
7:26 am
in prior policing roles has shaped your leadership style and prepared you to take on this role? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. i have been very fortunate to work in several different police agencies, different sizes in different communities. one of the things that has been most valuable about working in -- about that is being able to come in and look at things with a fresh set of eyes. asking the question why. talking to officers at the ground level. building new partnerships in each place i have worked.
7:27 am
these are all things that i think i would want to bring as a priority if confirmed to this position. i think i am a pragmatic person. i like to take a commonsense approach to things. i think that when you are willing to continually learn, no matter how much time you have in a field, i like to think of it as humility and it makes for effective leadership and helps you get some exciting things done. sen. harper: the second question i want to ask you deals with immigration reform, something we have talked about but haven't done enough about. the years i have worked with colleagues on both sides of the aisle in order to try to achieve comprehensive immigration reform. unfortunately we still face a number of issues that need to be addressed. the men and women of cbp are on the front lines each day
7:28 am
confronting the challenges re-aided by that system. to that end, what issues do you predict will be faced given the need to drastically reform the nation's immigration policies and procedures? how will you work with your counterparts to make sure the challenges are heard and addressed at all levels of the agency? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. i think it has been particularly difficult to be a cbp agent and border patrol agent in the recent past. i think that as laws and policies change, it is necessary to continue to reinforce the idea that professionals, as in policing, enforce the law. so, to the degree i can help depoliticize this process and build in resiliency as a key for
7:29 am
helping our men and women, our hard-working men and women at the border patrol be as effective as possible in their jobs, these are things i would like to tackle. immigration reform as you say -- sen. harper: chief, i'm going to ask you to hold it right there and we will allow you to answer later for the record. border enforcement priorities include the recent supply crisis -- september 30 four enforcement priority includes if not mistaken recent border crossers, do they not? can you speak to the folks who are no longer subject to deportation, please? mr. magnus: i'm sorry, senator, it's a little difficult to make out what you are asking. sen. harper: border enforcement
7:30 am
priorities include recent border crossers, do they not? mr. magnus: i'm not sure and because i'm having trouble understanding the question i would like to be able to respond back in writing. sen. harper: you will be more than welcome to do that. let me just close by saying that i am delighted to see you at this hearing and we look forward to your appointment, your credentials are excellent and you will have an opportunity soon. thank you so much. sen. wyden: senator langford is next. sen. langford: thanks for stopping by the office to talk about some things. let me set context. i want to ask a longer question. the big issue here really is what are you going to do, what's the plan? this year we are facing the highest number of illegal crossing introductions in the history of our country. this year. that's after october, november,
7:31 am
december, january the loan them -- low numbers, but january -- february to the present, numbers have skyrocketed. we have tripled the number of people each month crossing than what we had in november, december, and january. we have the highest amount of methamphetamines crossing the border in the history of the country. the highest number of fentanyl crossing the border in the history of our country. as you described yesterday, we have with the public hates, chaos. you have described yourself as not an open borders guy, which i appreciate. the big question we have to resolve here, stepping into this role, you are walking into a chaotic situation where we have the highest number of illegal crossings in the history of our country. what is your plan? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. of course, if there was a ready to go plan to address all the problems you just described, my
7:32 am
guess is that not only would cbp, but you all as a body would have, would have seen to it that it was implemented. i think that key to answering your question is going to be the importance of collaboration, building relationships. i think it's going to be important that the individuals who are making policy decisions, which obviously include the secretary, the president, and others, that they get accurate feedback from me based on what i'm seeing in terms of talking to the men and women at the border, in terms of talking to people in border communities. i think that getting that accurate information and as i pledged to you yesterday, my commitment is to be an honest broker around how this works,
7:33 am
is going to be important in terms of formulating a plan. that is something i want to be part of in this discussion. sen. langford: let me drill down more, how do you evaluate if this has been successful? reducing the chaos, is that moving people across the border faster? when secretary mayorkas was before the border security committee, he said they don't have to stay as long at the border in these camps, that we are getting them across the border faster. my basic question from a law enforcement perspective is, you are the chief law-enforcement officer in this role. is your goal to facilitate faster transition for people crossing the border into our country, or is it to prevent people that are illegally crossing from coming into the country? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. actually, i think it has to be
7:34 am
some of both. we are always going to have some degree of people crossing the border. this has been the case now for years. we have had surges. sen. langford: we have never had a surge like this. mr. magnus: senator, i understand -- sen. langford: it's the highest number in the history of the country. mr. magnus: i understand your concerns and don't disagree that the numbers are very high, but the bottom line still remains that first and foremost, we need to enforce the law and secondly, we need to have a process that is humane and efficient so that we can deal with those who are coming across the border, whether it be to seek asylum or for other purposes. again, to some degree we need to have both. sen. langford: what i'm trying to drill down on -- i understand there are both, but the role of the law enforcement officer is to enforce the law. we do it humanely and better than anyone else in the world.
7:35 am
so for us, we focus on humane treatment of individuals whether they commit a crime or not, but we also are working on the deterrent method. right now it doesn't feel like we are deterring activity, feels like we are encouraging it and i would tell you from the cartel perspective clearly they are making a tremendous amount of money incentivizing people to come and we see record numbers month after month. so, the border has large gaps of the fencing just south of your house there in arizona where the administration stopped on january 20 and left huge gaps. the asylum policy is being treated different. federal courts have stepped into dhhs to say they need to put act in migrant protection protocols again. there has not been a clear way to articulate what is going to happen to asylum. there seems to be no answer. all of those things together have left a border that is very porous and all i'm trying to
7:36 am
figure out is what is the plan, both with fencing, how we handle asylum, the alternative to title 42, what we will do for individuals crossing the border as singles, families, it's a multifaceted problem but there doesn't seem to be a solution, even when the federal work steps -- federal courts have stepped in to say you have to put in migrant protection protocols, the administration has yet to do it. sen. wyden: the gentleman's time has expired. senator haskell? senator haskell: thank you for this hearing and thank you, chief magnus, for 42 years of service in public safety and your willingness to serve in this critical role and thank you as well for your family, because this kind of service is a family effort and i appreciate their sacrifice, too. i want to start with border and immigration enforcement.
7:37 am
september 30, 2021, homeland security secretary mayorkas issued a memo containing guidelines for immigration enforcement. the secretary's memo provides guidance not only for customs and border protection, the agency you have been nominated to lead, but also immigration and customs enforcement and u.s. citizenship and immigration services. in the memo, the secretary stated threats to national security, public safety, and border security, would be priorities for immigration enforcement. chief, we talked a little bit about this during our one-on-one meeting. do you agree that individuals charged with serious crimes, not just those with prior convictions, can pose a threat to public safety and do you agree that it is important that dhhs personnel have the discretion to detain the visuals who have had a threat to public -- individuals who have had a threat to public safety?
7:38 am
mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. no question, from a public safety standpoint, the answer has to be yes. sen. haskell: now on to counter narcotics. my state, new hampshire, is being ravaged by narcotics. u.s. customs and border protection has an important role in disrupting international drug smuggling and interdicting the flow of drugs and money across the u.s. border. transnational criminal organizations are adapting and exploiting protectable procedures at the border. they use rail, pedestrians, unmanned aerial vehicles, and even submersible vessels to smuggle drugs into the united states. as a police chief of a border community, how have you prioritized and fought drug organizations? if confirmed to lead, what would you do to fight?
7:39 am
chief magnus: thank you for the question and you are touching on an issue that is near and dear to my heart. communities across the state and country have died of opioid overdoses. this battle has to be fought on multiple fronts. i will tell you in tucson, we have a collaborative effort called the counter narcotics alliance that involves not only state and local partners, but our federal partners as well, and i think this type of collaboration is essential, but i think we also have to use every available means at our ports of entry where we know the majority of these drugs are coming across to use technology and other resources more effectively to address these drugs. and then there is -- i think it
7:40 am
was touched on previously, related to e-commerce. we know there are many opioid and precursors of such that are coming through these small packages, many times through the postal service, because of relationships that are complicated, and so this is an area i know a good deal of work has been put in to the stop act and cpp -- cbp lays an important role in enforcing that. there have been a whole series of ways in which we can i think always do more to address this scourge. sen. haskell: i was going to ask you about the importance of new technologies on the border. you have touched on that. i will ask you, please, if you are confirmed, let congress know
7:41 am
what additional resources cbp needs to strengthen border security. that is going to be important particularly in counter narcotics. >> one last topic. cbp has two important missions. i was pleased administration finally heeded my call to end travel restrictions at the canadian border. the reopening of the canadian border to vaccinated individuals is an important and long-overdue step. your background in law enforcement including -- how familiar are you and how will you prioritize and manage the mission? chief magnus: thank you for the question. not only has my time growing up in michigan, but also in the six
7:42 am
and a half years i spent in north dakota where one of the cross-border traffic to canada is also essential for a host of reasons. it causes me to believe this is going to continue to be very important as perhaps the laws and rules change regarding title 42. whether it is appropriate staffing to address these issues , other factors that need to be considered, i'm very committed to cross-border traffic and trade. sen. wyden: senator daines is next. sen. daines: chief, if you are confirmed, you will be the helm of the largest law enforcement agency in the united states. and have the opportunity --
7:43 am
sen. wyden: i think we lost you, senator. do we have to move on? all right. we will bring senator daines back. i believe senator young is next. sen. young: thank you, chairman. mr. magnus, i would like to start off with a yes or no question. do you believe we have a crisis at the southern border, yes or no? chief magnus: senator, does it really matter whether we call it a major challenge, a crisis, a big problem? sen. young it speaks: two a
7:44 am
sense of urgency and the gravity of the situation. presumably one would answer the call to serve at this position because you understand the importance of the moment of history, being the commissioner of cbp. do we have a crisis, yes or no? chief magnus: let me assure you, no one believes there is greater urgency in this matter than i do. i have been at the southern border. sen. young: i have heard the characterization urgent. less than a crisis. you are saying there is not a crisis? chief magnus: no. i do not speak to urgent as less serious at all. sen. young: is there a crisis or is there not a crisis of the border? chief magnus: i would say my highest priority is going to be -- sen. young: i did not ask for your priority. is there a crisis at the border? as commissioner to customs and
7:45 am
border patrol agencies at a time i regard as a crisis, are you saying there is not a crisis? mr. magnus: what i'm certainly trying to convey is how serious i take what's happening at the border and the amount of work i will put into it. sen. young: noted, noted. dhs tells us we've already seen 1.3 million illegal border crossing so far this year. that's about 1.5 times the population of indianapolis indiana.
7:46 am
i would say that's a crisis. what number of illegal crossings would you consider to be a crisis. what if or we to quintuple that number. would you call that a crisis? mr. magnus: i appreciate your question and i'm already doing my best to acknowledge that the situation is very serious, regardless of what we call it. sen. young: i will move on. the situation's very serious. regardlessmi of what we call it, it is -- >> i'll move on. >> ithe is something important o me. the remaining contracts for the southern border wall in the rio grande valley. i'm looking for a series of yes or no answers from you, sir. do you believe canceling such contracts at this time is a prudent choice given this dire situation on our southern border? yes or no? mr. magnus: i am not working for cbp right now so i don't know exactly which contracts you are referring to.
7:47 am
sen. young: in preperation for this hearing, you didn't familiarize yourself with that? mr. magnus: i'm sorry, senator but i can tell you i'm with each contract border patrol has for infrastructure. what i will tell you sir is i think there is a place for infrastructure and i think that includes in certain sections completion of barriers and other things. this is an area i want to learn sen. young: you think there is a role. would you commit to reinstating the contract to become commissioner should you be confirmed? mr. magnus: i can't commit to initiating a contract that i am not familiar with. sen. young: have you familiarize yourself with title eight, u.s. code section 1325? mr. magnus: i'm sorry senator, i'm not familiar. sen. young: this is the operative federal law that makes it a crime for an individual to enter or attempt to enter the united states at any point other than a border inspection point or other official points of entry. this is what would basically
7:48 am
dictate the laws that you are enforcing and your actions as commissioner. are you familiar with that law, sir? mr. magnus: my primary responsibility as a police chief has been to be as familiar as possible with all of the laws we are responsible for enforcing. so, i can assure you that if i'm confirmed for this position, i will do the same. i will become familiar with the law. sen. young: you are the nominee to be commissioner of cbp and you have not familiarized yourself with the operative immigration law, i see that as being a concern. thank you. sen. wyden: time of the gentleman has expired. we will go to senator daines next. we are going to do our best to wrap up before the vote. just beyond notice. senator daines: chief magnus, if
7:49 am
confirmed at this position, you will be at the helm of the largest enforcement agency of the united states. i've had the opportunity a couple of different times to visit the border and seeing firsthand the heroic efforts our brave men and women put forth each and every day to protect our borders and country. unfortunately, the biden administration's disastrous border policies have led to a massive surge in illegal immigrants that have overwhelmed our border patrol officers. it is enlightening to spend time with these officers and hear firsthand what they see day in and day out. in fact, just this calendar year, there's been more than 1.3 million encounters at the southern border due to the ending the successful policy of the trump administration such as remain in mexico as well as ending catch and release. the migrant crisis has left portions of the border or vulnerable to an influx of
7:50 am
illicit drugs that the mexican cartels produce like methamphetamine and heroin. sadly, it's making its way to montana and ravishing many of montana communities. the administration's public threat of retaliation against border patrol officers -- this hoax is undermined the confidence those in position of leadership will have their backs. chief magnus, i appreciate your long career in law enforcement in north dakota as well as in arizona. i must say for this position i have serious concerns with the nomination. one thing we know for certain is the policies enacted under president trump were successful in stemming the flow of illegal migrants to our borders. policies which i must add were overwhelmingly supported by the men and women on the ground. you were publicly critical of the trump administration policies, notably the efforts to
7:51 am
crack down on sanctuary cities. as you look at the crisis we are seeing now at the southern border, wouldn't you agree biden administration is failing and that we should take a step back and relook at some of the common sense measures that were working in the previous administration? mr. magnus: thank you for the question and as i indicated before, i am pragmatic and common sense focused, which means i'm willing to talk to anybody and everybody related to the situation and to relay as best i can that information to policymakers. i do appreciate the opportunity to clarify since my first priority is achieved throughout my career has been around public safety that my advocacy that you are referring to in an op-ed was never political. it was a recognition that every community deserves to receive critical funding that helps
7:52 am
communities with the crime-fighting efforts. and regardless of what any elected body i decide to deem their city as being, i do not believe the residents of that community should suffer because they lack the resources that are necessary for the police to be able to do their job. so, my criticism was simply that any city should be able to have these resources so the local residents do not suffer. i think that would be consistent with just about every police chief that i know. sen. daines: the place i would agree with you in that statement is not politicized is very important issues facing the security of our nation. one area that been politicized the biden administration is the efforts to build walls.
7:53 am
i can tell you how anymore border patrol agents i've spoken with who said that was an effective way to help them secure the southern border. do you believe we should continue to finish building the wall we started? mr. magnus: i have also -- i appreciate the question. i've had the opportunity to speak to a number of border patrol agents and folks on the ground about this. the agents i've spoken to, there are some areas of the border that they think additional barrier would be useful. i am not taking issue with that. but they also talk about the need for better technology, better basic resources related to their ability to communicate by radio and by phone. sen. daines: so using their places where you agree. >> i think there are some gaps where that would make sense. sen. daines: thank you for that answer. recent reports of shown tens of thousands, perhaps over 100,000 migrants been released in the interior to detach and release. do you support catch and release
7:54 am
and do you think it's an effective system? mr. magnus: i appreciate the question and the challenge of course is we are dealing with a fundamentally broken system. it did not just become broken, it has been for many years and particularly over the last four plus years we've been challenged with not enough asylum officers, not enough immigration judges and long waits for court dates. these things take a toll. this is the truth. in multiple administrations. it will require congress to make a fix in this area. and i am very interested in working with the members of congress. i would like to work with you and others to see how we can best assure that the process works the way it's supposed to.
7:55 am
sen. wyden: next to senator warren. senator warren: thank you, chief magnus, for being here today. it's good to be able to speak with you again. i am very encouraged by your experience in law enforcement and your extensive experience with immigration issues. but i think anyone filling the post of cbp commissioner is going to have a very challenging job. one recent and very high profile example of these challenges has been the treatment of haitian immigrants in del rio, texas. border patrol agents who are cbp personnel engaged in cruel and disturbing behavior. inhumane treatment of migrants and asylum seekers is
7:56 am
unacceptable in our nation. i know dhs has opened an investigation into these interactions, so here is the commitment i would like from you. will you push for transparency in that investigation and for public release of all your findings? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question and i think you will find i have a long history of transparency and sharing things with the public, whatever the outcome may be, because i think this is how you sustain and build trust. i agree the image we saw were troubling. i am grateful to secretary for opening an investigation. i think it's very important that we be fair and allow the investigation to move in whatever direction it does with the facts gathered so i'm not going to prejudge.
7:57 am
i think we can safely say that examining tactics and training is certainly appropriate and after significant incident is something i have a long history of working towards. senator warren: i appreciate the history but i'm asking for a commitment. the two alaska transparency and the public release of findings. mr. magnus: i certainly commit i will push. negativity, there is a -- sen. warren: i know in the push for negativity, there is a temporally end to the border patrol's use of horseback units
7:58 am
in the area. but i see this as a symptom in a broader problem in recent years. will you make a top priority to ensure that all cbp personnel treat migrants and asylum speakers with the dignity as human beings they deserve and with proper respect for all of their legal rights, including the legal right to seek asylum? mr. magnus: thank you for that question. as i have spoken to, i believe we have asylum obligations as a nation and therefore, even as we seek efficiency and to be as effective as possible in working with individuals who seek asylum, we could never bypass the criticality of treating people humanely. these are fellow human beings and they have to be treated humanely. sen. warren: good. i appreciate that. we will work together on that. i will hold you to that. another concern i have is about the effect of the covid pandemic
7:59 am
at immigration detention facilities. i've been pushing for greater transparency about covid cases in these facilities and congressman castro and i introduced a bill to help ensure accurate and complete data collection regarding covid testing and safety protocols at cbp facilities and other immigration detention facilities. in the last month, the dhs inspector general released a report that found that cbp does not conduct covid testing for migrants who enter its custody. the inspector general recommended dhs reassess its covid response framework and dhs agreed with this recommendation. with that in mind, will you prioritize working with other federal agencies to ensure accurate and complete data transparency regarding covid-19 in cbp facilities? mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question. without good data collection, i
8:00 am
think we are really not in a great position. i support data collection, i support being transparent with that data, particularly as it relates to covid, i think it is critical. sen. warren: good. will you commit to keeping congress informed of those findings? mr. magnus: i will. sen. warren: the cbp commissioner has the opposition to ensure the care of individuals and its custody congress and the public have a right to know what's happening. so i appreciate your commitment to making that a priority. thank you and thank you mr. chairman. sen. wyden: we go now to senator cassidy and then senator bennett. senator cassidy.
8:01 am
sen. cassidy: thank you. i enjoyed our phone conversation. i know there's been a discussion of this recently earlier, but as regards to immunization, why are we not requiring those who are being allowed to come into the united states to be vaccinated for covid before being released to the united states? particularly the context of the biden administration is asking they have an excess to inquire their employees to get vaccinated. i'm not quite sure i understand the exception for those being allowed to come here illegally. mr. magnus: senator, thank you for the question and i think any of those individuals migrants coming in should be immunized. sen. cassidy: and should be required to be allowed to continue? mr. magnus: that's something i definitely want to explore. it seems reasonable to me. sen. cassidy: a couple other issues. your law enforcement background is without parallel. on the other issues for example
8:02 am
we discussed the jones act. cbp has jurisdiction over the jones act. the trade along that. what would you do in those areas that are kind of gaps in the background but nonetheless an important portion of the cbp mission? >> senator, thank you for the question. i know is assumption is been made that would be more interested in the border and those functions to the trade functions of cbp but i want to assure you the trade functions are an area where i'm extremely interested and want to commit to learning as much as possible. the jones act, i'm sure you realize better than most is incredibly complex. i'm doing my best to learn about it. sen. cassidy: can i ask, because
8:03 am
inevitably you will need a lieutenant who is going to be in charge of that. just because, your plate will be full at the border. do you have the ability to hire your own lieutenants will be someone there who makes it their top priority with the consideration. knowing you make an effort to learn but that this require someone with expertise. mr. magnus: thank you for the question. one of the great things about the process over the last several months is to learn about the number of highly knowledgeable highly dedicated people the trade. you are 100% right. sen. cassidy: in your testimony, you had a paragraph regarding the desire to address the issue of forced labor. i would advocate that be second and third degree. there's been a big push in this committee to support battery technology.
8:04 am
cobalt is being taken out of the congo using forced labor which is being employed, if you will, by chinese companies. there's a "new yorker" article about this and others in the press. i promoted an amendment that was were rejected on party lines that if -- that would ask that cobalt being used in batteries be ensured not to come from forced labor. to what degree does your commitment to addressing the use of forced labor include the kind of second-degree that isn't part of the batteries being made but is where the cobalt is being mind to be used in the battery? mr. magnus: thank you for the commitment and i would just mention forced labor is something i would like to consider is a top trade. sen. cassidy: but that would be a second-degree issue as well, not just china where it's being used with the uighurs but also in the congo? to put a point on it, it puts you a little bit in conflict with the emphasis on other parts of the administration to use battery technology which requires the use of this forced labor mined cobalt. are you willing to take on that political battle? mr. magnus: it would be certainly i would something
8:05 am
-- it would certainly be something to learn more about obviously. sen. cassidy: if you are going to take on forced labor i can tell you it's hard with the emphasis upon battery technology to take it on. because there is just a lot of folks who want to put head in the sand and not notice about child labor being in the congo, being used by chinese companies to take the cobalt to be making these batteries. so the simple answer, you may decide you don't want to engage in it but if it turns out what i'm saying is correct, will you take that on? mr. magnus: yes. it sounds like a very important situation. sen. cassidy: thank you and i thank you for the time. >> now we will go to senator bennett and senator scott. senator bennett: thank you for holding this hearing and chief magnus, thank you for being here and for your willingness to serve in an extraordinary difficult position.
8:06 am
as we discussed in our phone call, i remain deeply concerned about unaccompanied children crossing the border, the high number of children crossing once they are in custody. it's not a secret the previous administration did almost everything in its power to dismantle the legal immigration system. our legal services, educational programs, recreational activities. hundreds of kids were separated from their parents under president trump's policies and were never reunified. a humanitarian catastrophe. it was heartless and heartbreaking to have babies in
8:07 am
infants spend weeks and under resourced detention centers. much was done to deter children from coming but it didn't work. by may of 2019 there were almost over 11,800 children cap rented by cpb to stop the previous administration from summarily expelling these kids. present biden was sworn in him easily to executive action to revoke the enforcement priorities. he took further action to reunify families and care for the on the company children. however in the first eight months of 2021, over 118,000 unaccompanied children were apprehended and i continue to hear horror stories about their treatment both in cbp custody and beyond. there are currently still over 11,000 children in the government's custody. i recognize that this is an incredibly hard issue and the numbers are slowly declining but i've not seen any plans or any request from the administration outlining their strategy of
8:08 am
this. should you be confirmed, would you commit to work with secretary mayorkas on creating a plan that specifically supports unaccompanied children in cpb custody? mr. magnus: thank you for the question and there are a few things -- there are few things more important to me than how we treat children. it's something i've carried with me throughout my career. so the answer is absolutely yes. senator bennett: will you commit to immediately investigating any instance of physical, sexual or other types of abuse reported from cpb employees or contractors? mr. magnus: yes senator. senator bennett: will you commit to providing information to my office and others who may be conducting oversight for the purposes of protecting these children? mr. magnus: the answer is yes. senator bennett: thank you chief. in 2020, a drug overdose deaths increased in colorado by 38% over the previous year. the largest year-over-year increase since at least 2000.
8:09 am
this increase was worse than the u.s. average paid the highest rates of death to the overdose were in three counties in southern rural colorado. the overdose and overall mental health academic -- epidemic of only gotten worse over the last year, need to work at every level to address it. fentanyl seizures remain high, the substance is finding its way into communities in destroying them. how are you planning to address the trafficking of drugs across the north and southern border to help prevent these deaths and what types of technology or resources do you think are needed to better screen at ports of entry where these products are coming through? mr. magnus: thank you for the question. the scourge of fentanyl, of opioids in general that are coming across the borders is alarming and deeply troubling. we continue to see the majority of this drug, through the ports of entry. and so the technology that continues to be developed, some which is coming through cbp, others of which there's examples of this. obviously, the challenge, not of the agency at this time so i don't know the inner workings of
8:10 am
what those technology opportunities are exactly, but something i want to learn about because i think this is such a high priority. i realize it is coming through those borders. so i think there is a great deal more we can do and i would like to work with you and others on this. sen. wyden: before you leave, let me say how much i appreciate all the leadership you've given not just today, but throughout this congress to protect vulnerable children. i want to to know as long as i'm chairman of the senate finance committee i will be back in you. senator scott.
8:11 am
senator scott: thank you for being here. i have a few questions, but senator bennett's questions of answer least one of my questions which is whether or not you are unwilling to answer yes or no questions are whether or not you were just selective in answering yes or no questions. i've come to the conclusion you are selective of the questions you will answer yes or no to because both senator young and bennett asked very easy questions to say yes or no to. you struggled to come to the conclusion that there is a crisis on our border which i found fascinating.
8:12 am
millions of americans, literally millions upon millions of americans have come to the same conclusion that i have and that senator young has at franklin -- and frankly i think the administration is now coming to the same conclusion that there is a crisis on our southern border. when we have 200,000 folks illegally crossing our border in just july. more than a million in the last fiscal year, there is a crisis on our border. why admitting there's a crisis on the border is a problem, i don't fully appreciate. under the administration finally after demonizing every single action of the trump administration as it relates to the border, it's apparent to me but when the department of homeland security reinstates the remain in mexico policy, it is because there is a crisis at the southern border. i'm good ask you mr. magnus for clarification, with the
8:13 am
reinstatement of the policy with one million plus people crossing the border, more than 200,000 since shall i come in with the border agents, is there a crisis at our border? mr. magnus: thank you for the question. if i may make the observation that perhaps as a nation and a group of even elected if we spent a little less time debating on what the terminology is and perhaps a little more time trying to fix a broken system and working together we could address what i have already acknowledged is one of the most serious problems we face right now in our nation. sen. scott: we both come to the same conclusion that there's a crisis of the borders. it's the one area of many areas in the political spectrum we would like to see some kind of
8:14 am
uniformity and people working together and acknowledging the concerns we have. but words have meaning. we are living in a timer we are trying to find a way to erase and redefine words, but the fact that there's a crisis, there is a crisis. when rodney scott, the former chief of the border patrol who worked for both president trump and president biden, says the administration is abusing its authorities as relates to the rules, i will ask you with over 30,000 released people from parole and so many hundreds of thousands more just released into our communities, do you believe that the administration is abusing their immigration authority? mr. magnus: senator, i appreciate the question and obviously this issue of immigration authority and how it's being used is something that would be very important to me of confirmed for
8:15 am
this position. i'm coming into this as someone from the outside. my intention would be to learn as much as i can, talk to different parties involved and maybe get different perspectives on this, learn what i can and then share that information with those above me. sen. scott: let me say it this way. when our americans -- american public is watching the reckless action in afghanistan where we are trying to figure out what the vetting process was for those folks arriving here and we are thankful that those assisted our soldiers in afghanistan, we want to have folks who deserve to be here from afghanistan. the yet the vetting process was rushed because of the arbitrary nature of the departure that creates one concern for an immigration standpoint.
8:16 am
this exacerbates the situation when you add on top of those concerns for the average american seeing more than a million folks come into our country illegally which is about 20% of all of the citizens in the great state of south carolina. so you can imagine my concerns that are shared by millions of americans around the country as it relates to what we are doing on our border and what we are not doing on our border is very concerning. thank you. >> i thank my colleague. i believe senator cortez masto is on the web. >> thank you. chief magnus, thank you for the conversation earlier. and your willingness to serve. i know the fundamental role of u.s. customs and border protection plays in taking care of her nation's borders. and believe me i have traveled to the southern border not only as a senator here represented nevada, but as attorney general for the state of nevada. also to address the conversations this morning on the transnational criminal enterprises that continue to engage in drug trafficking, human trafficking, money laundering.
8:17 am
my understanding is my colleagues on the southern border only. let me ask you this because isn't it true that the multinational corporations abuse these criminal enterprises we been trying have been really engaging in the criminal conduct , illicit narcotics trafficking and money laundering, human trafficking, weapons trafficking for decades. particularly out of mexico. mr. magnus: senator, i think based on what i've learned so far i would share your concerns about this and i am pleased that would have also learned is how closely cbp is working with ice and others to target these criminal networks. if i'm confirmed for this position, this would be something very important to me because i understand the impact this has on the supply chain and many other things. >> i appreciate that because it requires effort with partners and other countries as well to address because it's a challenge we need actual have strong border security. when it comes to our border security, what resources and
8:18 am
technology to cbp need to improve for that infrastructure particularly for ports of entry. i know you're not there yet, but have you looked at this yet? mr. magnus: i appreciate the question because as i've come to learn so far and again admittedly looking at this from an outsiders perspective, of border security has to be addressed through a combination of things. i think technology is a very important piece and the use of unmanned aerial surveillance of different types, various sensors that can help us see into mexico to figure out what may be coming our way. technology that allows our border patrol officers to communicate more effectively with each other in difficult terrain or across distances, these are some of the technology pieces. as i previously mentioned i also understand the need to address other infrastructure concerns where it makes common sense to do so as well as to address probably the most important
8:19 am
resource we have which is our people, making sure they are getting the training and support that they need to do their jobs. >> thank you and i agree with you.
8:20 am
let me put something on your radar. in 2019, i had the opportunity to visit a joint intelligence operation center located in tucson, arizona. this center acted as a fusion center style for many different law enforcement agencies to coordinate operations to communicate. my understanding though is that it has since closed and i'm trying to find out why. it's a perfect example of where you have the collaboration at all levels of government to focus on the need at the border. so my question is if confirmed,
8:21 am
would you commit to working to get answers? i'm still waiting for them, why this center located in tucson was closed because i think it was a perfect example of how the collaboration should continue on. mr. magnus: thank you for the question. i will commit to providing you with more information. i can give you the good news which is there is an unusually high level of collaboration between state, federal and local partners around many of the issues we've discussed that's going on both in tucson and throughout arizona. >> thank my colleague in particular her focus on how criminals are taking advantage
8:22 am
of some of the holes in process of enforcement. senator portman i believe will be our final live questionnaire. senator portman: thank you mr. chairman. i appreciate it. chief, i appreciate your testimony today. i got to hear some of it off and on. i appreciated our conversation about some of the challenges we are facing on the border today. the crisis at the border continues to in my view be based on policy decisions that we are making or need to make and the big one for me is the asylum system. i talked about this at some length. i would like to hear from you a little about your perspective on this. we recently saw the surge in del rio. but the overall numbers continue
8:23 am
to increase and for the traffickers, those were exploiting people, unfortunately they have a narrative which is if you come up to the border with us and pay us $10,000, we will get you to the united states. just claim asylum and you will be let in with a 1.2 million person backlog at least. and with four to five, maybe six years before a hearing. with the acceptance rate being about 15%. and probably similar with regards to other countries that are increasing their numbers. the system is clearly broken.
8:24 am
could you speak to that and what you think about our system and if confirmed how it would make your job harder and what could be done about it. mr. magnus: thank you for the question and also thank you for the conversation we were able to have about some of these things. >> we have certainly aligned around the challenges associated with the factors. there's no question there are factors bringing migrants to this country. the pole factors are very evident and i think there is simple solution to this. obviously the message is going to be have to be clear that we intend to follow the law. we will have to do more messaging at every level of government. that includes effective social media messaging. we will have to do more to anticipate surges and work with the mexican government around that. i am, as i mentioned, very interested and open to working with my counterparts in mexico in building the strongest possible relation there. so again, no one easy answer to this but i agree it's part of the challenge.
8:25 am
sen. portman: i guess just quickly, are you also willing to work with those of us who believe the asylum system is broken. to come up with a system that makes more sense. as an example having them apply from their home country, having an immediate adjudication, allowing the system to work as it's intended. mr. magnus: i am very interested in working with you and others. i agree the asylum system absolutely must be improved. as i've tried to reinforce several times, i think this requires bipartisan approach. it requires listening, compromising, sharing and i'm very open to doing all of those things, including, frankly, a number of conversations with the men and women at the ground level working on some of these challenges on a day-to-day basis and we have some strong and well thought ideas about how things can be made better.
8:26 am
so you have my commitment for that. sen. portman: i look forward to working with you should you be confirmed on that issue. another issue we talked about is the security along the border. only about 10% of the technology was put in place prior to the biden administration coming into office and calling a pause on all construction. we talked but the situation along the border, you've seen it in arizona. we saw it in del rio not long ago looking at the gaps in the border wall which are to me, obvious things that should be closed and crates a problem for the border patrol. -- creates a huge problem for the border patrol.
8:27 am
but that one that particularly troubles me is the fact even though democrats and republicans alike talk about the need for sensors and cameras and more sophisticated technology, again only about 10% of that was completed. would you be supportive of completing the technology? i won't put you on the spot in terms of the so-called wall. i believe that fencing ought to be completed as well. it's nonsensical we paid to -- the contractor to do this and border patrol has to stand there 24/7 to protect a gap in the wall. let's move onto the technology issue where think there's more consensus. would you be willing to say today that you support completing the technology? sensors, cameras to be able to give your border patrol officers the opportunity to build and respond more effectively and efficiently? mr. magnus: thank you for the question and you are correct, i'm interested in providing the agents of the border patrol with the best possible resources including improvements in technology, something a very interested in learning more about, especially as the border
8:28 am
is not homogenous and it's different along different sections. senator brown: i'm pleased to be able to go after my colleague from ohio. whose name i invoked a number of times last time about the infrastructure work we've done together. especially in by america. congratulations, your nomination to this post is critical for addressing issues that the chair and i have worked on. as a ranking member mentioned in his statement earlier prayed this is critical. we need you to take this post as quickly as possible and commitment is certainly that. encountering issues with something of chinese sourced product. we know china has historically used every tool at its disposal to get around our trade laws. that's why i introduced my bill with senators portman and rubio and casey. to level the playing field to update trade remedy laws and address these issues. we need the commissioner of customs and border protection to make this a priority.
8:29 am
there are a couple of trade issues. the first on shipment and the second on circumvention. ohio companies are seeing increased shipments from china but a port of entry that says south korea. they will originate in china, make a stop in another country and it doesn't get the proper review on our shores.
8:30 am
another company explained to us that despite our tariffs covering electrical steel, china gets around by creating products used for electric grid transformers and moving that through mexico and canada. they did target american businesses for illegal dumping in our market. they make it were small business can compete and are about to do it for materials sensitive for national security. without proper enforcement we put our industries and jobs at risk. i'm sorry for the long intro. talk about if you will how you will take the entrance of american workers committing today to putting workers as a priority in trade enforcement? mr. magnus: senator, thank you very much for the question because there is no doubt that what happens in these cases that you've
8:31 am
described with shipments, with the abuse of various trade agreements, with the whole anti-dumping countervailing duties situation that it is not just american business, but american workers who are really operating on a very unequal playing field and so whether we are talking about ranges from wire hangers to solar panels, these are very real concerns and i look forward to learning more about how the trade personnel within cbp are addressing these challenges so i can support them and be an advocate for them and work with the business community both large and small. the goal is not only to facilitate business, but to be as transparent as possible about what is going on so we can
8:32 am
address these challenges. sen. brown: thank you. every time you and i interact personally and by mail or online, i will always bring up the importance of orders to keep that importance. this is a pretty simple yes or no. will you commit to making sure leveling the playing field 2.0 is a priority of the administration? mr. magnus: i believe it has to be. sen. brown: last question is about immigration. we are seeing a dramatic increase on unaccompanied children arriving at the border. it's imperative that the children are safe and protected while in our care. we must ensure agents of the necessary training to process children awaiting to be placed with hhs. social workers can play a role in supporting agents and their children in their care, i assume you agree with that. mr. magnus: i do. sen. brown: ok.
8:33 am
thank you, mr. chairman. >> before he leaves i want to talk about his leadership on the forced labor issue. we've been talking chief magnus about it. he's been a work closely with us and i look forward to all that you have done. so we got a couple of formalities, i want to thank all the members for their purchase patient. with a very high turnout today. chief magnus, thank you for your candid response with regards to questions for the records. members can submit questions by october 24 at 5:00. the expectation the members will submit them by close of business friday if possible, we really want to move this very important nomination, 5:00 p.m. deadline is firm. let me wrap up with a couple of quick thoughts. colleagues on both sides of the aisle have raised critical issues, particularly humanely addressing immigration on the southern border while we tackle relentlessly illegal drugs and
8:34 am
we facilitate legal trade and we investigate and stop goods that are made with forced labor. a lot of important issues. senator cardin made a point which was perhaps more eloquent than how i tried to describe it. he said we don't have to sacrifice efficiency for humanity with respect to your portfolio. you've got important work to do. i suspect you will have colleagues on both sides of the aisle supporting you, because of your candor, because he for professionalism. i strongly support you before this morning and you've given us additional reason to support you. we will excuse you at this time. the finance committee is adjourned. [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
8:35 am
[inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations] [inaudible conversations]
8:36 am
[inaudible conversations] >> here's a look at what's life today. on c-span the house will vote on a resolution to find steve bannon in contempt of congress for ignoring a subpoena issued by the january 6th select committee in connection with their investigation. they return at 10 a.m. eastern for general speeches followed by legislative business at noon. on c-span2 the senate is back at canadian to take up judicial nominations as well as douglas parkers nomination to the assistant secretary of labor. later, supreme court justice clarence thomas and senate minority leader mitch mcconnell speak at an event commemorating the 30th 30th anniversary of justice thomas' confirmation to the court. at 10 a.m. on c-span3, attorney general merrick garland testifies at an oversight hearing held by the house judiciary committee. you can watch online at


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on