NBC correspondent Jacob Soboroff said Friday on MSNBC’s “Deadline” that it was “preposterous” Sens. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and John Cornyn (R-TX) led a group of more than a dozen Republican senators to the Rio Grande Valley in Texas to see the surge of unaccompanied migrant children crossing into the United States.
Anchor Alex Wagner said, “There are two delegations at the border this afternoon; Democrats, led by Texas Congressman Joaquin Castro are visiting the HHS facility which provides temporary care for unaccompanied minors. Republicans, meanwhile, 19 of them, led by Senators Cruz and Cornyn, are touring the Rio Grande and look how they’re doing it, armed to the teeth with bulletproof vests aboard vessels outfitted with large machine guns.”
Soboroff said, “I mean, I think it’s fair to say that Republicans, what they’re doing is preposterous if you ask me. I have stood — it’s not dangerous, by the way. I’ve stood on that dock. I’ve talked to those Texas Department of Public Safety Agents. I have seen those boats and stood within feet, inches of them, myself. They’re not meant for patrolling the river to look for unaccompanied migrant children seeking asylum. They’re meant to interdict drug smugglers. The idea that they would go out there just looking at them and approach young migrants, the obvious thing is going to happen, they are going to terrorize the children who are coming here to seek asylum in the name of a photo op.”
He added, “I say it’s dangerous because these children and minors are coming here to seek asylum, which is their legal right, not only under international law but under United States law. If these Republicans really want to find a solution to what is the true humanitarian crisis at this moment, at this hour, at this minute, they would spend time figuring out how to get kids out of Border Patrol custody where they shouldn’t be and put them over to Health and Human Services so they can have the expertise of a child welfare worker take care of them.”
Wagner said, “I, too, have been on that border in McAllen, Texas, on the Rio Grande, and it’s inner tubes that we’re talking about that are coming across the border. ”
Soboroff said, “People go there, and they ride Ski-Doos in the water, Alex. It’s a place where people go to have barbecues and hang out in the park, and have a good time with their family. The idea that 19 U.S. senators would show up and get in a gunboat is dangerous because of the message that it sends about who’s coming into this country, that you need to approach minors, children, families armed with what I think— I’m not a gun person, but 30-caliber machine guns? It is preposterous.”
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