GOP lawmakers slam Biden admin in reaction to college murder suspect’s immigration status: ‘Close the border!’

Congressional Republicans are calling out President Biden and his administration's border policies after a Venezuelan immigrant who crossed the border illegally was charged with the murder of a Georgia student.

Congressional Republicans are slamming the Biden administration’s border policies after a Venezuelan immigrant who crossed the border illegally was charged with the murder of a Georgia nursing student. 

Twenty-six-year-old Jose Antonio Ibarra, the suspect charged in the murder of nursing student Laken Riley on the University of Georgia campus, is a Venezuelan national who crossed illegally into El Paso, Texas, in September 2022 and was released into the U.S. via parole, three ICE & DHS sources told Fox News. 

House Speaker Mike Johnson, R-La., shared his condolences with Riley’s family and friends while also reemphasizing Republicans’ efforts to pass border legislation. 


“The brutal murderer who took the life of Laken was one of the millions of illegal aliens that the Biden Administration simply released and unleashed upon our country,” Johnson wrote on X, formerly Twitter. 

“For Laken, and the countless many others lost to this border catastrophe, House Republicans will continue to fight tooth and nail for a return to law and order. Mr. President, use your existing statutory authority and CLOSE THE BORDER!,” he added.

Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp posted a letter sent to President Biden on Saturday, “demanding information” on Ibarra’s immigration status and calling for a holistic approach to border safety.

“Joe Biden’s failed policies have turned every state into a border state, and I’m demanding information from him so we can protect our people when the federal government won’t!” Kemp wrote in an X post.

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In the letter, the Republican governor called Biden’s silence on illegal immigration statistics “outrageous.”

“Frankly, Mr. President, your continued silence in response to these reasonable requests is outrageous,” Kemp said. “The American people deserve to know who is illegally entering our country due to your administration’s failures, and what risks and challenges every state must now face.”

“These tragedies are not unique to Georgia. While we will continue to support Texas with National Guard resources as we have since 2019, federal action to secure the border is the only way to wholistically [sic] address this ongoing crisis and ensure Laken Riley’s horrible fate is not replicated across the country,” he said.

Georgia Republicans Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene and Rep. Andrew Clyde called out Biden on X, saying that he has “blood” on his hands following Riley’s death. 

“Laken Riley, 22-year-old UGA nursing student, was murdered by an illegal alien from Venezuela that the Biden admin released in our country,” Greene wrote. “Joe Biden, Mayorkas, and the Democrats have blood on their hands. Praying for her family.”

“Laken Riley, the 22-year old nursing student found dead on the UGA campus, was murdered by an illegal alien,” Clyde posted on X. “The Venezuelan migrant, Jose Antonio Ibarra, illegally crossed the border and was released on parole in September 2022. Joe Biden has blood on his hands.”

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Rep. Andy Biggs, R-Ariz., of Arizona echoed Greene and Clyde’s sentiments, writing, “These are the tragic consequences of open border policies. The Biden Administration has blood on its hands.”

Senator J.D. Vance, R-Ohio, called the situation enraging, saying that Ibarra should never have been in the country. 

“Enraging. He shouldn’t have been in our country. And now an innocent American is dead,” Vance wrote.

The White House insisted on Friday that House Republicans stand in the way of a solution to what Biden has called a “broken” immigration system. 

“For the past several months, we worked with Republican senators and also Democrats in the Senate to try to come up with a fair and tough piece of legislation that would deal with border security,” Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters at the daily White House press briefing. 


She noted that a bipartisan deal reached last month had been endorsed by the Border Patrol union before Johnson declared it “dead on arrival.” 

“Speaker Johnson has gotten in the way of this,” Jean-Pierre added. “We did our job. The Senate did their job in a bipartisan way. 


Ibarra was taken into custody by UGA police Friday and has been charged with malice murder, felony murder, aggravated battery, aggravated assault, false imprisonment, kidnapping, hindering a 911 call and concealing the death of another, UGA Police Chief Jeffrey L. Clark said during a news briefing Friday evening.  

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Riley, an Augusta University nursing student, was found dead Thursday after previously attending UGA before entering a nursing program at the University of Augusta’s Athens campus. 

According to an incident report obtained by Fox News Digital, multiple officers began searching for Riley near the Intramural Fields around 12:07 p.m. At 12:38, a UGA police officer spotted her on the ground. 

“I called out to Riley, and I did not get a response,” the officer wrote.

She had visible injuries, and police could not locate a pulse. They began CPR anyway. A sergeant arrived with a defibrillator minutes later and unsuccessfully attempted to revive the victim.

Autopsy results remained pending Friday, but authorities said they were investigating her death as a homicide. Clark said it appeared as though she had been killed by blunt-force trauma.

Kemp’s office did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.

Fox News’ Michael Ruiz, Chris Pandolfo and Bill Melugin contributed to this report. 

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