MCALLEN, Texas (AP) — South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem’s tour of the U.S. border with Mexico on Monday was filled with climbing into military vehicles, visiting with troops and positioning herself as tough on an issue that’s sure to loom large in 2024 presidential debates.
The Republican governor flew to McAllen, Texas, to check in on the roughly 50 National Guard members who volunteered for a 30-day deployment. She heard how troops have encountered many children crossing and are eager to be stationed where even more people cross the border each night. By the end of the day, she had doubled down on border policy, saying she was considering extending the National Guard’s assignment for more months.
“The reality of it is astonishing,” Noem told The Associated Press after meeting with the troops. “What our soldiers are seeing is a porous border.”