Florida lawmaker addresses the immigrant border crisis

Representative Carlos A. Gimenez discusses his recent trip to the U.S.-Mexico border and his meeting with President Biden to discuss a bipartisan infrastructure plan.
5:03 | 04/22/21

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Transcript for Florida lawmaker addresses the immigrant border crisis
Let's turn now as we approach the 100th day of the Biden administration, the president continues to work on advancing his legislative agenda and this week he met with a bipartisan group of lawmakers at the white house to discuss one of his major priorities, infrastructure. And we are join now by one of the members of congress who attended that oval office meeting, freshman representative Carlos giminez of Florida, welcome to "Gma3." We appreciate your time, congressman. And you've said in addition to president Biden, yes, there is bipartisan support on this infrastructure. Tell us what your takeaway was from meeting with president Biden there in the oval office. I think we had a very good, frank discussion. Republicans, Democrats put their cards on the table on the Republican side. Look, we really want to focus in on infrastructure and ruff this $2.3 trillion infrastructure package has things in it that have nothing to do with infrastructure and that doesn't necessarily mean it's roads and bridges. We agree they can make us more competitive in the world and they're part of infrastructure. The transportation infrastructure, our communications front lines, those things, and we can come up with a bipartisan bill that congress can support. Another priority has to be with what's going on at the border. You made a couple of trip downs. There I want to get your quick impressions on that, but also you and another group of Republicans are calling on vice president Harris to make a trip to the border. She has been named, some want to call it a border czar, but the white house kind of tried to clarify and say she's going after the root causes and making a trip to Guatemala and Mexico trying to address why people are making that journey in the first place. So I want you to address that as well. Well, look, we've got a crisis that's going on right now. Unfortunately, the Biden administration overturned some of the previous administration's policies at the border, the agreements that we had with Mexico and the northern triangle countries that really stem the flow of this migrant flow that I see. We have a crisis at the border. We have thousands of unaccompanied minors that are crossing the border due to the policies that the Biden administration put in place. We're getting overrun. And this -- and our customs and border protection agents have told us repeatedly they need more personnel, they want that border wall to be completed. The sections that have been already contracted out. We're actually paying people not to build the wall, which to me seems to be, you know, ludicrous. And then we need more technology to stem the flow. But also, the policies. The policies need to be changed back to the old policies that we had with the trump administration. That really stemmed that flow. And then, yeah, do we have to find out what the root causes are? We know what the root causes are. We need to have more investments in central and South America. We need to incentivize companies that maybe are overseas to come back to our hemisphere and create better working conditions, better living conditions for those people. But at the same time, immigration should be legal. We have a legal system, and we need to make sure everybody complies with that. And, congressman, we just heard you blame the current situation there at the border, the crisis on the Biden administration. We heard you say you would change things back to the way things were under the trump administration. Given the current situation with these children that we now have at the border, would you turn them away? Would you send them back? How would you handle the current situation that we have found ourselves in? Well, the problem is that the current policy says that if you are -- if you are with a family unit and you come with a child under 6, 7 -- or under 7, you get to, you know, you get processed in the United States. If you have a child that's 7 or older, that family unit gets, it's called article 22 -- 42, and they get sent back to Mexico, to be processed there. So what happens is, if you're a child that's under 18, and you cross, then you're processed in the United States. So what's happening, they're coming as family units and their children are older than 7, then they're sent over the wall or over the border to get processed. So actually those policies are separating families at the border. Plus, the policies are incentivizing people to come. We are actually helping the multinational cartels that control the border to make hundreds of millions of dollars a month on human trafficking. They're trafficking, a lot of them are young girls that are being violated, we're putting them in danger. The policies have to change, so that we don't incentivize this kind of activity at the border any longer. It is certainly a very troubling situation right now that needs our full attention as a nation. Congressman Carlos giminez, thank you for your time. We certainly appreciate it today. Thank you very much.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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