Senator David Perdue: Broken Immigration System Presents A Dire Threat To National Security

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator David Perdue (R-GA) released the following statement after the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued its visa overstay report, which revealed that more than half a million people illegally overstayed their visas which expired in 2015:

“A visa entry-exit tracking system has been required by law for 20 years, yet it still does not exist. That is unacceptable. Today, DHS cannot even tell us how many people in our country have overstayed their visas. One of the first inquiries I made of the DHS was about its progress in collecting data on this very issue. Nearly eight months later, DHS finally released a shocking report that shows more than half a million individuals unlawfully overstayed their visas in 2015. Equally as shocking, the federal government is only investigating roughly 3,000 of those individuals who are here illegally. This number of overstayed visas includes hundreds of people from countries with significant Islamic extremist movements and confirms that our immigration system is broken and presents a dire threat to our national security.”

During a Senate Judiciary hearing in April 2015, Senator Perdue asked DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson to provide the committee with data on visa overstays. This is a request many members of Congress made to the Obama Administration. Yesterday, DHS released its visa overstay report that showed nearly 527,127 people overstayed their visas which expired in 2015, including: 1,435 individuals from Pakistan; 681 from Iraq; 564 from Iran; 440 from Syria; and 219 from Yemen.