By Charles Creitz
Published June 24, 2019
Congress must act to fix the crisis at the southern border and "false narratives" about the Department of Health and Human Services' work must stop, according to Secretary Alex Azar.
Azar characterized the situation at the U.S.-Mexico border as dire, but said some accusations against his department's work in the area are not true, in a Monday interview on "The Ingraham Angle."
"It is just incredibly troubling," he said.
"We have a humanitarian crisis at our border. We've got families and kids flooding across our border in unprecedented numbers," he said.
Azar said HHS shelters are at capacity and the budget is not there to increase it unless Congress acts.
"We're full and we're running out of money. We need this money to take care of these kids," he said. "I can't put a kid in a bed that does not exist and I cannot make a bed that Congress doesn't fund."
Host Laura Ingraham asked Azar about comments 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Julian Castro made about funding the border shelters.
"I wouldn't give them one more dime for these types of conditions," Castro told CNN anchor Jake Tapper.
"I don't have confidence that if you give them more money right now, if they have a plan to actually you know, different conditions..."
Azar pushed back on the Housing and Urban Development secretary's comments.
"What conditions are we talking about?" he asked.
"We provide these kids some of the safest, most secure environments that some of these kids have unfortunately ever had.
"There is this false narrative that somehow we are trying to keep these kids with us for a long period of time. Our goal at HHS is to have these kids with us for zero days if we could. We don't want any kids in our care. We have actually decreased the average number of days the kids stay with us from over 90 days down to 44 days."