Illinois Republican congressman Adam Kinzinger was cornered by CNN anchor Jim Sciutto after claiming that President Donald Trump’s decision to send 5,000 active duty troops to the U.S.-Mexico border was anything more than a political stunt to help endangered Republicans hold onto their seats during the 2018 mid-term elections.
Pointing out that the border is already patrolled by 20,000 armed agents, Sciutto asked Kinzinger if he “suspect[ed] that the military is being used to some degree here to political effect?”
“To the extent of any kind of political effect, this is a political issue with real consequences, so it depends how you define that,” Kinzinger replied cagily. “I don't think he's deploying the military for the sole purpose of winning an election because we did not do that great in November.
“I think it’s a legitimate use for the military, whether it is guard or a surge of active troops,” he continued. “Defending the U.S. border, I think, is a very important role of the federal government.”
“What's the real threat from these migrants?” asked Sciutto, again noting the 20,000 Customs and Border Patrol agents already on duty. “Is that really a clear and present danger in your view?
“Well, see, I don't think the question is ‘is this a clear and present danger’. Are we defending against an invasion? I don't use those terms,” Kinzinger said, trying to change the subject. “President Obama did it. President Bush did it. Yeah, President Trump is much more controversial on these issues, but now he's doing it. I don't see this as an end of the world kind of thing.”
Watch the video below.