February 12, 2024

Ricketts, Cruz Introduce Bill to Stop Biden from Closing Ports of Entry

February 12, 2024

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Pete Ricketts (R-NE) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) introduced the Keeping International Land Ports of Entry Open Act to stop the Biden administration from closing international land ports at the southern border and negatively impacting American commerce. The legislation comes after the Biden administration closed two rail crossings at the southern border in December to assist with processing illegal aliens.

“We cannot allow American consumers, businesses, and producers to continue paying the price for President Biden’s refusal to secure our border,” said Senator Ricketts. “The decision to shut down train traffic in December cost $250 million in commerce per day. I’m grateful to join Senator Cruz in this effort to protect our critical trade routes and provide critical oversight of any Biden administration staffing decisions that may impact American commerce.”

“Joe Biden is harming American farmers, ranchers, manufacturers, truckers, and consumers by prioritizing welcoming illegal aliens over facilitating lawful commerce,” said Senator Cruz. “Joe Biden’s policy of transferring CBP agents from facilitating commercial border crossings to instead welcoming in illegal aliens has caused millions of dollars of economic damage. My bill ensures that lawful commerce will continue to invest in the Texas economy by prohibiting the Biden administration for closing ports of entry on the Southern border except in limited circumstances, such as physically assisting Border Patrol in detentions.”

Co-sponsors of this bill include Rick Scott (R-FL), Mike Lee (R-UT), and Marsha Blackburn (R-TN).


The Biden administration closed two border ports in December. These closures gave the impression that Customs and Border Protection (CBP) was assisting Border Patrol. However, the CBP admitted that the agents were used to “quickly process individuals encounter” in their monthly update.

The Keeping International Land Ports of Entry Open Act would stop the Department of Homeland Security staff from diverting staff away from ports of entry unless there is a delineated exception. The bill includes a built-in accountability mechanism and requires the Secretary of Homeland Security to notify the House, Senate, and the American people what exception applies if they relocate staff and close a port of entry.

Full text of legislation can be found here.