Pete Buttigieg Dodges On Why Biden Won’t Reinstate Trump’s ‘Remain In Mexico’ Policy

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Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on Thursday repeatedly dodged on why President Joe Biden will not reinstate former President Donald Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy.

The Biden administration scrapped Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy in August 2022 after being forced to reinstate it in November 2021. CBS co-anchor Tony Dokoupil pressed Buttigieg on why the president won’t put the policy back in place but the secretary shifted the blame to Republicans for not passing a recent bipartisan border security deal on “CBS Mornings.” (RELATED: Majority Of Americans Support Building Border Wall For First Time In Poll’s History)


“Let’s talk about the border, an issue that cuts across a lot of different categories, a lot of different issues overall … The president has said, ‘work with me, Republicans.’ Republicans arguably have said ‘no, we’re not going to. We want this as an issue, not as a solution,'” Dokoupil said. “But why doesn’t the president then take executive action? He could reinstate ‘Remain in Mexico,’ which would reduce the number of people coming over and staying and waiting.”

The policy sent almost 70,000 migrants to Mexico to wait for their immigration court hearings, according to the American Immigration Council.

“Look, the president has taken a number of actions with the authority that he has. There are some things he’s not going to do. Like family separation,” Buttigieg said.

Dokoupil interrupted, asking why Biden won’t put “Remain in Mexico” back in place but Buttigieg did not answer.

“What he is doing right now is make sure that he’s supporting the kind of border moves that we all know that we need,” the secretary said. “Most Americans think we ought to do it. There was a bipartisan deal to make it happen and congressional Republicans killed it. And I think that demonstrated that they would prefer to have the problem, which is more politically useful than the solution that most Americans, including the president of the United States, wants to see happen.”

“But it almost seems like he wants the problem too, because there are these things he could do that he’s not doing, and Remain in Mexico — that’s an example of it,” Dokoupil countered.

Buttigieg repeated his point about the failed Senate border deal Congress did not support.

“Again, he’s doing everything that he responsibly can under the law, as it now stands. He has called on Congress to update the law and send more funding. And so far Congress has said no,” he said.

Biden has rolled back numerous Trump-era border policies since taking office, including his Muslim travel ban and border wall project.

Border Patrol encountered over 2.2 million migrants in fiscal year 2022 and over 2 million in fiscal year 2023, according to federal data.

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