Speaking in an exclusive interview with anchor Maria Bartiromo on “Sunday Morning Futures” on the Fox News Channel, Kevin McAleenan, acting chief of the Department of Homeland Security, said, “So first let me just acknowledge your point about the dangers our agents are facing out there on the border. We’re very glad our agents came out of that encounter OK [on Friday night] with their training, with their effective response. But it does highlight this duel nature of what we face at the border — the border security and the humanitarian aspects of what we’ve been working to counter all year long.”
He was referencing a deadly shoot-out that took place this weekend along the southern border in Texas in which two U.S. border agents were involved.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reported that the agents pulled over a vehicle on Friday night in Brackettville, west of San Antonio — and someone inside that vehicle then opened fire, wounding one agent.
The second agent returned fire — killing the shooter.
“In terms of the funding,” McAleenan added after his discussion of the dangers America’s federal employees face, “I would highlight two different areas. One, we’ve asked for significant investments in border security. The president’s asked for additional border wall from his first day in office. We’ve received some funding, not the full amount that we’ve asked for from Congress. That appropriated funding is already being directed to build the wall. But then he declared a national emergency to access additional Department of Defense funding, counter-drug funding as well as military construction funding that we’re now deploying to … additional wall projects, and including key areas of the border where we need to replace wall that’s not effective at all and put new wall there, and also extend our coverage of the border.”
“So with the president’s commitment,” added McAleenan, “we’re going to have 450-plus miles of wall done by the end of 2020, and we’re really ramping up the pace of construction right now.”
Bartiromo noted that the government is “also arresting human smugglers. You are seeing the numbers go down in terms of those people in custody. This is the first time you’re talking publicly — first Sunday — that you’re talking since releasing the August data … Give us some of that data in terms of where we are.” – READ MORE