McALLEN, Texas (Border Report) — House Speaker Nancy Pelosi led a congressional delegation of mostly Democrats on a tour of Guatemala on Thursday and they plan to visit two other Central American countries on Friday and Saturday and culminate the trip with a visit to McAllen, Texas, on Sunday to view migrant detention facilities, U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar, a Democrat from Texas, announced.
Pelosi, Cuellar and 11 other lawmakers toured Guatemala and met with officials there Thursday afternoon. They plan to fly to El Salvador and Honduras over the next two days where they will meet with representatives of the governments, the judiciary, civil society, community and faith-based groups, the private sector, and human rights organizations.
On Sunday, the delegation will travel to McAllen, Texas, “to see conditions for migrants from Central America at the detention centers and speak with community and faith-based leaders who provide humanitarian aid to migrants,” Cuellar announced in a press release.
Other members of the congressional delegation include Democratic Representatives Eliot Engel and Nydia Velazquez, of New York; Jim McGovern, of Massachusetts; Lucille Roybal-Allard, Katie Hill and Norma Torres, of California; Anthony Brown, of Maryland; Mary Gay Scanlon, of Pennsylvania; and Lauren Underwood and Jesús García, of Illinois. Republican Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen, of American Samoa, also will be going on the trip, Cuellar said.
“The Northern Triangle of Central America has seen unprecedented levels of migration to the U.S. due to extreme levels of violence, corruption, food insecurity, and lack of economic opportunities,” Cuellar said. “To properly address the challenges El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala are facing, we need to strengthen our relationship and reaffirm our shared value with these countries. As a delegation, we will work together to create strategies to improve security, economic development and governance in these countries.”
To properly address the challenges El Salvador, Honduras, and Guatemala are facing, we need to strengthen our relationship and reaffirm our shared value with these countries.”U.S. Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas)
Pelosi had been expected to visit McAllen on Monday, but Border Report was told earlier in the week that her aides had been working to plan a trip to Central America and there were many logistics involved. Pelosi has visited South Texas before, including a visit to the Humanitarian Respite Center run by Catholic Charities of the Rio Grande Valley in 2014, when a surge of migrants began coming from Central America into South Texas.
“As our high-powered delegation begins our visit to the Northern Triangle, we look forward to strengthening our partnership to enhance regional security and stability, create greater economic opportunity, combat corruption and advance human rights to make it safer for people to thrive in their communities,” Pelosi said in a press release.