A Democratic lawmaker from a district bordering Mexico concurred with Republicans Wednesday in saying border security must precede comprehensive immigration reform.

Rep. Gabrielle Giffords (D), who represents Arizona's 8th congressional district, which borders Mexico, said border security must be the first priority for lawmakers and President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaObama: Republican Party members believe 'white males are victims' Texas warehouse where migrants housed in 'cages' closed for humane renovation North Carolina — still purple but up for grabs MORE and his administration.

"First and foremost, we have to secure the border," Giffords said during an appearance on CBS's "Washington Unplugged" webcast. "I really don't believe at this point, in the national dialog, we're going to have a comprehensive bill until we really, finally secure the border."


Giffords, a second-term lawmaker, had goaded Obama into agreeing to send 1,200 National Guard troops to the border in the state, mirroring a GOP proposal but still well short of the 3,000 troops Arizona Republican Sens. John McCainJohn Sidney McCainJuan Williams: Obama's dire warnings about right-wing media Democrats' squabbling vindicates Biden non-campaign McSally, staff asked to break up maskless photo op inside Capitol MORE and Jon Kyl had requested.

The Democrat is considered somewhat of a centrist, and said that she still supports comprehensive immigration reform, which would give illegal immigrants a path to citizenship. But, like many Republicans, Giffords said that securing the border is the first priority.

'I agree, and many of us in Arizona — Congressman [Jeff] Flake, Sen. McCain, and Sen. Jon Kyl, myself — have advocated in the past for a comprehensive immigration reform bill," she said. "I think we need do it, for a lot of different reasons. But we have to secure the border first."

"And that means all discussion about national security — and I serve on the House Armed Services Committee — the billions that we send abroad, we have to protect the United States," Giffords said. "National Security means border security."




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