GOP lawmaker: 'Disrespectful' for Trump to keep troops at border

Outgoing Rep. Carlos Curbelo (R-Fla.) on Wednesday called it "disrespectful" that President TrumpDonald John TrumpTrump mocks wind power: 'When the wind doesn't blow, just turn off the television' Pentagon investigator probing whether acting chief boosted former employer Boeing Trump blasts McCain, bemoans not getting 'thank you' for funeral MORE is keeping troops stationed along the southern border.

Curbelo said during an appearance on CNN that the troops aren't needed at the border because Customs and Border Protection personnel are "perfectly capable of defending our borders."


"They've been doing so for very many years, and the situation at the border has gotten better over time thanks to their hard work. And this is also disrespectful to these troops," he said.

"These men and women — the president is right, they are tough. But we should be using them in the most effective and efficient way possible. Again, they're just not needed at the border," Curbelo continued.

Thousands of troops were deployed to the border at Trump's request, who has claimed that migrants moving through Mexico and toward the southern border are a national security threat to the U.S.

But Democrats and some Republicans have said that the migrants, who are fleeing violence in their home countries, do not present a threat and have accused Trump of staging a political stunt by deploying the troops.

Curbelo, who was defeated earlier this month by Democrat Debbie Mucarsel-Powell in a district that Democratic presidential nominee Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonTrump mocks wind power: 'When the wind doesn't blow, just turn off the television' Trump's approval rating stable at 45 percent Kellyanne Conway: 'I think my gender helps me with the president' MORE carried by 16 points in 2016, said sending the troops to the border "was a creation of the president to make people believe that there is this horrible threat."

"Not the case, and by no means do I condone illegal immigration. By no means should this caravan be allowed to just march into our country," he said. "But the point is, we already have the resources that we need at the border to keep us safe."

The Army commander overseeing the mission at the border told Politico earlier this week that the Pentagon is planning to soon begin withdrawing troops from the border.