Democrat Beto O’Rourke said on Thursday that if it was up to him he would “absolutely” tear down the existing border barriers on the U.S.-Mexico border.
O’Rourke’s comments came in response to Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX) asking him: “If you could snap your fingers and make El Paso’s border wall disappear, would you?”
“Because this DHS graph shows that when the wall was built, illegal crossings dropped significantly,” Crenshaw added.
O’Rourke made the comments on MSNBC’s “All In With Chris Hayes” on Thursday while on the border.
“If you could, would you take the wall down now?” Hayes asked. “Knock it down?”
“Yes, absolutely,” O’Rourke answered. “I would take the wall down.”
O’Rourke’s comments come after his rally on Monday night in El Paso where he claimed that walls kill people.
“With the eyes of the country upon us, all of us together are going to make our stand, here in one of the safest cities in the United States of America — safe not because of walls, but in spite of walls,” O’Rourke said. “We treat each other with dignity and respect. That is the way we make our community and our country safe.”
“Walls do not save lives,” O’Rourke added. “They end lives.”
Existing border barriers on the southern border have already proven to be highly effective.
“Of course nothing is impenetrable or foolproof, but the fencing in Yuma, Arizona, is a great example of what works,” The Hill reported. “Since its construction in 2005, it has yielded better than a 90 percent drop in illegal traffic. Similar numbers have been registered at other physical barriers in San Diego, El Paso, Texas, and Tucson, Arizona, since their construction.”
As the border battle has intensified in Washington, D.C., the Republican National Committee launched a website that contained the following facts about the crisis on the border:
Fact #1: In four Customs and Border Protection sectors where physical barriers have been expanded — El Paso, Yuma, Tucson, and San Diego — illegal traffic has dropped by at least 90%.
Fact #2: In fiscal year 2018, U.S. Border Patrol seized or helped seize 282,000 pounds of cocaine, 248,000 pounds of methamphetamine, 6,500 pounds of heroin, and 2,400 pounds of fentanyl.
Fact #3: In 2018, over 17,000 adults arrested at the border had prior criminal records. This included over 6,000 gang members, a major number of those members were from MS-13.
Fact #4: The Democrats would rather risk the safety of hard-working Americans than work with President Trump to secure our nation’s borders. But in 2013, all 54 Senate Democrats, including Chuck Schumer, voted to pass legislation that provided $46 billion to build a physical barrier on the border.
Fact #5: Nancy Pelosi and her hyper-liberal Congressional colleagues just passed a bill to give $54 BILLION to foreign governments, but Democrats won’t allow just $5 billion to secure our borders and protect American citizens.
Israel can attest to the effectiveness of border walls, as it saw a 99% reduction in illegal immigration after it built a wall.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu tweeted: “President Trump is right. I built a wall along Israel’s southern border. It stopped all illegal immigration. Great success. Great idea.”