President Trump heads to US-Mexico border

The president is visiting the town of McAllen, Texas, which borders Mexico.
5:22 | 01/10/19

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Transcript for President Trump heads to US-Mexico border
Now for a closer look at the issues going on the border ABC news' chief national correspondent Matt Gutman is they let's take a look at his report. And Byron just wanna give you sets of where we are this is the steel slated fence that the president has talked about but. On the other side is not actually Mexico this is still the United States were in Texas. Because. For much of where this fence existed 55 miles of it here in the Rio Grande sector in south Texas a much of it. Or most of it is on the US side and deep you know at least 5600 yards from the river between the United States and Mexico and with the Border Patrol officials that we spent most the day with yesterday told this is they want to see this. Across the entirety of the Rio Grande sector that's about 270 miles or so they say that this works now it's not foolproof. The steel. Slated fences like this you can't cut through even climbed through but it gives them enough time to be able to respond in frees them up to do more. But the kind of work that they typically do which is not stopping asylum seekers which is what they be doing so much of recently but. Stopping traffickers and yesterday we went with the acting chief of the Rio Grande sector wrote all Ortiz. A two Krista was spot that he says is the busiest along the entirety of the 2000 mile border with. Mexico you can see it this gate closing out this allows farmers to get to their land on the other side but. He took us to this spot which is about. A mile in that direction up from where we are right now and as soon as we arrived in started walking through that brush in the reads we saw on the other side Mexican smugglers taking people cross on these tiny. Inflatable rafts basically the size of a bathtub. At first we are cut a surprise because the first four people walked up. Work Indians. For May be and then there to Pakistan he's as well they were taken in it I guess they were Seeking Asylum. Then there were other boat loads and they carried Honduran immigrants three fathers. Each with a child and then two mothers and separate boat load one with three children she was from Ecuador. And what was. A little surprising was how routine it seemed. On both sides the Border Patrol agents knew what they were doing they were incredibly professional and civil. With these asylum seekers these silent seekers simply walked up to them and presented themselves to the Border Patrol and as long as they stepped foot on US soil. They are entitled to seek asylum and that's what they saw do you is on you bring a child you're likely to be released on your own recognizance right now after Bob. 48 to 72 hours because of the US court ruling. That basically prohibits the detention of children for longer than twenty days and that's what we saw so they gathered them on that road and the Border Patrol chief was telling us that. Essentially this is the catch and release that the president is talking about these people will be processed in a facility a couple of miles from we are. Right here. They will spend two days in that facility. There will go through security checks make sure that they don't have previous criminal record still get hot meals a change of clothes showers. Bathrooms and then they'll be released. Probably to local local migrant shelters here and then. On to other places. One of the families those they have a mother in Houston another said they're bound for Miami where they have friends and family. And that's it they then have to appear at a court hearing. At a later date it could be years down the road. Because the immigration courts are so backed up and that's the other side of what the Border Patrol is asking for they're not only asking for fence. They want 800 million dollars in humanitarian aid they want much more money. To beef up their facilities which are overflowing. With asylum seekers 25000. Fan at least 22000 children. Just in the month of December alone these are record numbers. Which the president and the Border Patrol. The people here are saying is a crisis not exactly the crisis president has talked about not a crisis of security. But certainly a humanitarian crisis the big question is. What will he decide today. I think a lot of the Border Patrol agents we spoke to want this shut down to end because they are not getting paid. Including that chief but they told us they will continue do their job. Until that shutdown is over. Meg governor at the border thank you so much Matt an earlier match talked to the mayor of McAllen Texas where president trump will visit today. Take a look take a listen to part of that conversation. One of things the president mentioned is that there is a security crisis here. What was the murder rate in McAllen Texas we're 000. We had numbers zero workers were a safest city in the state tax. As the corn their most recent FBI. We think when they don't they're much weird like from the Kamal we've had another two years of decrease so we were seven citizen United States. And that's how I do these interviews I I have no political and ambitions. But when we get depicted as being a dangerous place we've had the army Gunner National Guard down here they are million dollars. Highway Patrol down here. So the rapists gangs murderers the terrorists that the president has mentioned in the past. They don't exist here at least at least hear him say your message to the president would be. Don't mess with commerce don't mess of the ports of entry we want border security. Not necessarily a law absolutely. Meant thank you so much.

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

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