Texas congresswoman-elect says southern border has 'never been safer'

An incoming House Democratic lawmaker representing a border area emphasized this week that the U.S.-Mexico border is safe, despite President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump pushes back on recent polling data, says internal numbers are 'strongest we've had so far' Illinois state lawmaker apologizes for photos depicting mock assassination of Trump Scaramucci assembling team of former Cabinet members to speak out against Trump MORE's repeated calls for heightened security.

“The border is secure. It has never been safer,” said Rep.-elect Veronica Escobar (D), who won election last week to represent Texas' 16th District, encompassing El Paso and surrounding areas.

“It’s time to stop the national obsession with border security," Escobar added during an event hosted by the Congressional Progressive Caucus.

The former El Paso County judge, who won the race to replace Rep. Beto O'RourkeBeto O'RourkeO'Rourke: Trump driving global, U.S. economy into recession 2020 Democrats feel more emboldened to label Trump a racist Hillicon Valley: O'Rourke proposal targets tech's legal shield | Dem wants public review of FCC agreement with T-Mobile, Sprint | Voters zero in on cybersecurity | Instagram to let users flag misinformation MORE (D-Texas), argued that "the goal post has kept moving" on border security.

But she maintained that "coming from the border, one of the safest cities in the United States of America, the border is secure and it’s time for us to move on to humane comprehensive immigration reform."

Trump made immigration and border security a major campaign issue with his Republican base during the midterm elections. 

Before the election, the president ordered the deployment of troops to the U.S.-Mexico border, citing a migrant caravan of Central American asylum seekers trekking toward the distant U.S. border.

Escobar, along with Texas Rep.-elect Sylvia Garcia (D), made history last week when they became the first two Texas Latinas to be elected to Congress.

— Alison Spann