Former United Nations ambassador Nikki Haley will visit the southern border on April 3, her campaign announced Tuesday, making her the first Republican presidential candidate to do so.
Haley will travel alongside Republican Texas Rep. Tony Gonzales to locations between San Antonio and Eagle Pass, all of which are in Gonzales’ 23rd District. The 23rd covers the majority of the Texas-Mexico border and includes the heavily trafficked Del Rio sector. U.S. Border Patrol chief Raul Ortiz recently testified at a field hearing that his agency does not have “operational control” of the southern border.
“Joe Biden caused the crisis at our southern border with his terrible policies and then ignored it for two years. Leaders show up. That’s why Nikki Haley is going to the border,” Haley campaign spokesman Ken Farnaso told the Daily Caller.
At a Monday town hall in Dover, New Hampshire, Haley outlined her platform on immigration, including mandating E-Verify nationwide, hiring 25,000 new Border Patrol and ICE personnel, and prohibiting sanctuary states and cities from giving taxpayer funds to illegal immigrants. Her campaign previously told the Daily Caller News Foundation that she supports labeling drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations.
As governor of South Carolina, Haley signed a law mandating statewide E-Verify and requiring that police officers contact federal officials after arresting illegal immigrants. The Obama administration sued over the law, claiming that it “interfered with the federal government’s enforcement of immigration.” The legislation also made selling fake IDs to illegal immigrants a felony and prohibited transporting illegal immigrants.
House Republicans released an immigration white paper ahead of the 2022 midterms that included nationwide E-Verify, completing the southern border wall, re-implementing the Migrant Protection Protocols and increasing funding for Border Patrol and ICE. Texas Rep. Chip Roy introduced legislation in January that would prohibit migrants from setting foot on U.S. soil if they do not have proper documentation.
Gonzales opposes the legislation. Roy’s bill “does nothing to fix the root causes of the problems at our border,” Gonzales wrote, but would “just turn asylum-seekers away.” Gonzales is already facing two primary challengers from the right who argue that he has not done enough to oppose illegal immigration.