President BidenJoe BidenBiden and Congress must take bold action to prevent violent extremismThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Facebook – Biden faces GOP’s immigration and filibuster offensiveDemocrats play defense on border crisisMOREs administration is preventing Border Patrol agents and sector chiefs from speaking to the media via an unofficial gag order passed down verbally, NBC reported Wednesday.

NBC reported that Border Patrol staff have been told to refer all media requests, even those from local outlets, to Customs and Border Protection staffers in Washington and to deny all ride-along requests. The network attributed the information to officials who asked to remain anonymous.

NBC News had itself requested and was denied access to overcrowded border processing facilities holding unaccompanied migrant children according to its report. 

A media representative from U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) did not immediately respond to requests for comment from The Hill. However, a spokesperson from the Department of Homeland Security, the parent organization of CBP, told NBC it is following media procedures first adopted in 2014.

This standard and process has been followed at DHS since the Department’s inception and across bipartisan administrations. Customs and Border Protection continues to publicly provide the same monthly data on the same schedule as it has since 2014, the spokesperson told NBC.

The new media rules were given verbally, not via an official memo, NBC reported. In response some border agents decided to release videos of mass arrests and migrant surges of migrants on their own, without permission, NBC reported.

Though President Biden and congressional Democrats scored a significant early win when Biden signed the $1.9 trillion coronavirus rescue package into law on March 11, they have been challenged by a surge of immigrants at the border.