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Former Vice President Pence touts Trump-era border policies in Arizona speech

Former vice president Mike Pence saw the Arizona-Mexico border first-hand on Monday and then gave an immigration speech in Phoenix.
Published: Jun. 13, 2022 at 6:02 PM MST
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PHOENIX (AP/3TV/CBS 5) — Former Vice President Mike Pence called for an enforcement-first strategy in confronting problems at the United States-Mexico border in a border security speech in Arizona. Pence toured a section of the border in southeastern Arizona, meeting with Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels and gave brief comments to the local media.

Pence then traveled to downtown Phoenix and delivered a 30-minute speech. During his address to state GOP lawmakers and other Republicans, he criticized the Biden administration’s immigration strategy, claiming their border policies created a “crisis” in America. He also told the audience how he would handle the current surge of migration. “We built a wall. Good walls make good neighbors and we built a wall that worked and made a difference,” Pence said. Besides the construction of more border wall, Pence also said he’d end what he called “asylum fraud,” putting a stop to chain migration and keeping Title 42 in place.

Pence also complimented state and local officials in Arizona for trying to fill in security gaps at the border that aren’t covered by the federal government. “To keep America safe, we must secure our southern border now and always,” Pence said, drawing applause.

The visit comes amid growing speculation that Pence will make a presidential run in 2024. Arizona is a key swing state, and immigration is always a top issue with GOP voters.

Pence didn’t comment during the speech on the U.S. House committee investigating the Jan. 6 insurrection and didn’t speak with reporters after the event. Last week, Rep. Liz Cheney relayed an account from inside the White House. When Trump was told rioters were chanting for Pence to be hanged for refusing to block the election results, Cheney said Trump responded that maybe the mob was right, that he “deserves it.”

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