The incumbent Customs and Border Protection Commissioner was banned from his Twitter account because he shared a tweet that the border wall is keeping criminals out of Mexico – a claim he has made several times in the past on the social media platform.
Mark Morgan, who has served as the deputy commissioner since July 2019, said one of his tweets had been removed and he was banned from his Twitter account for posting support for the wall.
Morgan's now-removed tweet claimed, "Every mile helps us keep gang members, killers, sexual predators and drugs from entering our country. It's a fact that walls work. & # 39;
Morgan claimed that withdrawing Trump's immigration programs, including halting construction of the border wall, would lead to an "invasion" of illegal immigrants.
"The wall system we're looking at is working," Morgan said during a speech in Texas Thursday.
Acting Customs and Border Protection Commissioner Mark Morgan was banned from his Twitter account for a day after posting a post alleging Donald Trump's southern border wall kept "killers, sexual predators and drugs" out.
The tweet can no longer be seen on Morgan's Twitter. Instead, it has a notification from Twitter in its place stating, "This tweet is no longer available" and prompting users to "learn more about" why
Department of Homeland Security Acting Deputy Secretary Ken Cuccinelli posted a picture of the now-removed tweet – along with others who share similar views from Morgan's account
Department of Homeland Security Acting Assistant Secretary Ken Cuccinelli posted a picture of the now-removed tweet that appears on Morgan's Twitter profile as a space between two tweets with the word "This tweet is no longer available".
While @jack declared Twitter censorship to the Senate, Twitter blocked @CBPMarkMorgan! Why? B / c he posted THE TRUTH that @ CBP & # 39; s Wall is helping prevent gang members, killers, sex predators and drugs from entering America, ”Cuccinelli posted on Twitter, fixing the words Morgan got from excluded from his account. "The other pictures prove @CBPMarkMorgan is right."
& # 39; @CBPMarkMorgan had too much TRUTH for a tweet so I had to extend this one … pics of a drug attack and a double wall coming right after this one. @jack only lets me take 4 pictures here… ”Cuccinelli continued.
Jack Dorsey, CEO of Twitter, along with Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Facebook, and Sundar Pichai, CEO of Google, were called to Capitol Hill on Wednesday to discuss how politics are handled on their respective platforms.
Dorsey came under fire specifically because Twitter censored or flagged some of President Donald Trump's tweets, but not tweets in denial of the Holocaust and those calling for the destruction of Israel by Iranian leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei.
"They didn't lock me out, they locked you out," Morgan said Thursday when Twitter blocked him from speaking to the American people. "They have their own ideology, their own belief system imposed, to justify keeping the truth from the American people because it did not fit their very obvious and transparent agenda."
The comments came during a press conference Thursday morning in Texas' Rio Grande Valley to celebrate the completion of 400 miles of Trump's border wall.
The commemoration took place just five days before election day and showed immense progress on what is perhaps the most famous election promise made by the president four years ago.
Morgan described the feat as an "incredible milestone" and described the wall system along the border between the US and Mexico as "an essential part of a decades-long, multi-faceted strategy of infrastructure, technology and personnel".
He also defended his now blocked tweet and earlier ones with the same sentiment.
“My tweet was meant to educate the American people who border on matter and the great things the men and women of CBP and [the Department of Homeland Security] as a whole have done. My tweet should emphasize that border security is national security, ”he said.
Speaking at a press conference to commemorate the 400-mile border wall built under Trump, Morgan said, "You [Twitter] didn't lock me out, they locked you out" and spoke about the American people. "They have their own ideology, their own belief system imposed, to justify keeping the truth from the American people because it did not fit their very obvious and transparent agenda."
Morgan shared a picture with The Federalist of the news he had received about the temporary ban on access to his official Twitter account.
"Hello CBP Mark Morgan," began the message from Twitter. & # 39; Your account, @CBPMarkMorgan, has been banned for violating Twitter rules. Especially for violating our rules for hateful content. & # 39;
The Twitter warning then claims that his tweet "threatened" minorities.
"You must not encourage, threaten or harass violence against other people based on race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender, gender identity, religious affiliation, age, disability or serious illness," said Twitter.
Morgan argued Thursday that the tweet essentially read that border walls are "an important part of a multi-layered strategy helping the men and women of CBP apprehend criminals," and resembled the "hundreds and hundreds" of tweets it sends out had in recent years.
While most of the wall was built in areas with smaller barriers, the government built hundreds of kilometers of fences up to 30 feet high in a short space of time – most of it this year. But the crews blew up hills and destroyed sensitive habitats in national game reserves and on Native American land to do so, and prioritized areas to build faster.
The Department of Homeland Security waived environmental and other reviews to expedite construction. And despite President Donald Trump's repeated promises that Mexico would pay for the wall, its construction was funded by US taxpayers for at least $ 15 billion, two-thirds of which from military resources.
In Texas' Rio Grande Valley, where Acting Secretary of State for Homeland Security Chad Wolf and other officials spoke Thursday, authorities added just 7 miles to sections of the stop-and-start fence. That is even though the region has long been the busiest corridor for unauthorized crossings.
DHS officials held several events this month announcing immigration operations in states considered competitive in the elections. Polls show a tight race in Texas that hasn't supported a Democrat for president since 1976. Stephen Miller, a top Trump adviser, told reporters on Wednesday, "We have a president who is committed to the successful construction of a border wall."
Wolf and other officials repeated Trump's campaign attacks on Thursday at an official government event. Wolf criticized the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Nancy Pelosi, judges who ruled against the wall, and what he described as "lying in the press".
Laiken Jordahl, a field fighter from the Action Fund of the Center for Biological Diversity, has documented the destruction of sensitive areas along the border.
"We're seeing this government just blowing up everything to build an extra mile of wall," he said. “None of this is about border security. The point is to increase that mileage to make Trump look difficult for re-election. & # 39;
Border patrol deputy chief Raul Ortiz said this week that the agency is not pushing to build fast this year if Trump loses to Democrat Joe Biden, who pledged to freeze construction of a border wall if he wins .
"For us, regardless of who is in the White House, I think it will be terribly important to give agents the tools and resources," Ortiz said. "This infrastructure is important for us to do everything we can to control this border."
Border guards say the new fences, many of which have replaced much smaller vehicle barriers, offer more deterrence against people smugglers and people trying to evade capture. The construction also includes roads, lights, and cameras that agents can use to detect illegal activity.
Wolf claimed the new sections allowed agents to push border traffic into areas they could better control. However, the Government Accountability Office has determined that CBP has failed to demonstrate how existing border walls improve security. Most drugs are smuggled through ports of entry, not unfenced areas.
The Trump administration has taken other measures to stop cross-border commuters, including new restrictions on asylum seekers and a public health statement citing the coronavirus pandemic, which allows agents to quickly evict most migrants.
As of last week, 381 miles of wall has been completed during the Trump administration. More than 270 miles have been built using a portion of the $ 10 billion military received Trump in a national emergency he declared last year after Congress refused to honor his request for wall funding.
Congress has funded around $ 5 billion for border barriers under Trump, including more than $ 3 billion in the past two fiscal years for construction in the Rio Grande Valley and the Laredo, Texas area. Of the more than 150 miles Congress funded over the past two years, only 5 miles have been built.
The government faces significant obstacles in Texas, where the border is formed by the Rio Grande and the floodplains are governed by international treaties. Much of the land is privately owned. While prosecutors have filed dozens of convicting suits this year, many landowners have refused to let agents take over their land or give up property without a court order.
"We're still fighting it," said Lilly Cavazos Rodriguez, whose family owns land in South Texas that the government has seized in court.
"We are not ready to give up our country, so we will fight as long as possible," she said.