Mayor Dee Margo of El Paso, Texas told CNN Monday morning that President Trump's claim that a border fence made the city safer was based on false information. The president is set to headline a campaign rally in El Paso Monday night calling for more border walls.
Margo said Trump was echoing a false claim made by the Texas Attorney General and, "if people had contacted me about our attorney general's remarks, I would have corrected it at that time as well."
MAYOR DEE MARGO (R), EL PASO, TEXAS: Well, I've said for months, if you want to learn about the border, you need to come to El Paso. We are the largest U.S. city on the Mexican border and we're kind of really one region of 2.5 million plus people. So I'm pleased he's coming in and hopefully, we'll get a chance to visit and talk about and see firsthand what the border really looks like and how we are so closely intertwined for almost 400 years between El Paso and Juarez...
Well, what he was echoing in the State of the Union, and he was certainly correct at the end of his remarks about El Paso, that we are the safest city, but the prefacing remarks were -- he was echoing what had been said by our attorney general a few weeks ago in McAllen that was wrong.
If people had contacted me about our attorney general's remarks, I would have corrected it at that time as well.
We were, going back to 2005, one of the safest cities in the nation. The barrier went up and the fence went up and it's only about ten miles long. And the total fencing in the El Paso sector is about 78 miles. And it's not continuous.
Now it does -- it's part of the process for border security, but it's not the total panacea. But the remarks that the president made in the State of the Union were -- were stated originally, almost verbatim, by our attorney general some weeks ago. And that's where the erroneous comments came from that were not correct.