© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign rally in Claremont, New Hampshire, U.S., November 11, 2023. REUTERS/Brian Snyder/File Photo
(Reuters) – Republican Donald Trump won the endorsement of Texas Governor Greg Abbott at an event near the U.S.-Mexico border on Sunday, a location meant to highlight the former U.S. president’s plans to crack down on immigration if he wins the 2024 election.
Trump, the frontrunner for the Republican nomination to challenge Democratic President Joe Biden next year, traveled to Edinburg, Texas, with Abbott to visit Texas National Guard soldiers, Texas Department of Public Safety troopers and other service members stationed there.
Trump and other leading Republicans contend that Biden has put U.S. communities in danger with record levels of migrants flowing into the United States from Mexico illegally.
Trump has pledged to crack down on illegal immigration and restrict legal immigration if elected next year. His plan includes a promise to restore his 2019 “remain in Mexico” program, which forced non-Mexican asylum-seekers hoping to enter the United States at the Mexican border to wait in Mexico for the resolution of their cases.
The program was terminated by Biden, who defeated Trump in 2020, pledging more humane and orderly immigration policies. But he has struggled with record levels of migrants caught crossing the U.S.-Mexico border illegally.
Abbott has emerged as a leading Republican figure on border issues by mounting his own Operation Lone Star border security initiative, a controversial plan to stop migration that has put his state at odds with the Biden administration.