On MSNBC’s Daily Rundown Monday, correspondent Mark Potter, who is embedded with the border patrol, told guest Host Kristen Welker that the “steady flow” of illegal immigrants across the border continues at an average of 1,000 per day in the Rio Grande Valley.
NBC’s Welker, sitting in for Chuck Todd, asked Potter to report on conditions on the ground at the border in Mission, Texas. Though he tried to put the best face on it he could, his report was not encouraging. Potter said they while they were experiencing a bit of a “let-up”—which has happened before, as he points out—there’s “no stop to the flow” of illegal immigrants.
Welker: NBC's Mark Potter has been riding along with the border patrol. He joins us from Mission, Texas. So, Mark, what's the latest that you're seeing there?
Potter: Hi, Kristen. It's clear that the flow continues. It's a steady flow. We saw a lot of people on Friday night. We saw some more yesterday. So there's no stop to the flow. But there is a bit of a let-up.
What we're noticing is that the numbers are down considerably over three weeks ago. At that time we saw 1,400 to 1,500 people being apprehended a day in the Rio Grande Valley area behind me. Now the numbers on average is 1,000 a day. We've had 800, even 500 a day, so this is definitely a downward movement.
Though the slight “downturn” is heartening, Potter emphasized that this has happened before, so it does not point to a definite trend:
Potter: Now, the question is, is this just a temporary down turn or an actual trend? Agents need another week or so to look at the numbers and watch this to see if it is a trend. They have had downturns in the past that have moved back up again so they are waiting to see what this means, but it is clearly down now. We saw an agent who was here overnight and he said he didn't see a thing at all last night, so that's a story you hear more commonly; you didn't hear that three weeks ago.