WASHINGTON – President Joe Biden signed an executive order Tuesday to temporarily shut down asylum requests at the U.S.-Mexico border, depending on the volume of migrants seeking asylum.

The order would turn away migrants crossing the border once the average number of daily encounters hits 2,500 between ports of entry.

Following the order, Missouri U.S. Sens. Josh Hawley and Eric Schmitt offered responses to FOX 2:

Josh Hawley

Hawley told FOX 2 in a virtual one-on-one interview that there should be stronger limits on border security.

“What a joke,” said Hawley. “Here is a guy who has let in 9 million illegal immigrants into this country in the last three years.”

Hawley says this has led to crime concerns in Missouri and nationally.

“This president is responsible, and now he says, maybe if a few thousand more [migrants] every single day cross the border, maybe he’ll think about closing it down. Close it now. He should have closed it years ago, but close it now.”

Hawley describes the order as “window-dressing” ahead of the November 2024 reelection.

“It’s total window-dressing, and I don’t think the American people are going to buy it,” said Hawley. “But it’s 100% window dressing. This is the guy who opened the border. Let’s not forget, he opened it, and now he’s saying, ‘Oops, a lot of people came in. … Maybe I’ll think about closing it temporarily in the future.’ He’s not even doing it today. This executive order does not close the border. It doesn’t do anything. It says, ‘Maybe in the future, I’ll take some action.’ It’s a joke.”

Eric Schmitt

Schmitt shared a video Tuesday of him speaking against the executive order. He argues that the Biden administration has reversed Trump-era policies that have weakened border security.

Schmitt also offered this statement to FOX 2 on Tuesday.

“Americans see right through this election year posturing. In his first 100 days, Biden reversed nearly 100 executive actions, which opened up our border to the tune of 10 million illegal immigrant crossings since he took office. This executive order would normalize another 1.75 million illegal immigrant crossings each and every year and further encourage cartel trafficking of children. Joe Biden has every authority he needs to completely close the border – he just doesn’t want to,”