Pence calls Biden’s border wall order ‘ironic’ at Iowa stop

Former Vice President Mike Pence called the Biden administration out during a campaign stop in Iowa Friday when he said it was “ironic” that Biden greenlit new border wall construction in Texas Thursday after years of disparaging the idea.

“It’s pretty ironic to me that the last two days the Biden administration just announced they’re going to start building some wall,” Pence said. “Even a blind squirrel finds an acorn every now and again.”

The Thursday announcement from the administration waived 26 federal regulations to begin the construction of over 20 miles of border wall in Texas with funds allocated during the Trump administration. It’s an issue that has divided Democrats, while inviting scorn from Republicans, as Biden has so far avoided any border construction during his administration.

Pence said the move isn’t close to enough. 

“Don’t be deceived. 26 miles ain’t going to get it,” he said. “But what I’m going to do if I’m President of the United States, I’m going to finish the wall.”

While most Democrats have denounced the border construction as a flip-flop on promises not to build walls, others have praised it as a “necessary step” to help stem border crossings from Mexico.

“This is a necessary step to help Texas’ overwhelmed border communities deal with this current surge of migrants,” Rep. Colin Allred (D-Texas) said in a statement to The Hill Friday.

The Biden administration pushed back on criticism, with the president saying a set of legal restrictions forced him to use the funds for the express purpose of building a border wall.

“The money was appropriated for the border wall. I tried to get them to reappropriate, to redirect that money. They didn’t. They wouldn’t,” the president said. “In the meantime, there’s nothing under the law other than they have to use the money for what it was appropriated for. I can’t stop that.”

In the announcement Thursday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said the new construction is necessary for border security.

“There is presently an acute and immediate need to construct physical barriers and roads in the vicinity of the border of the United States in order to prevent unlawful entries into the United States in the project areas,” he said.

Pence has placed fifth in national GOP primary poll averages, garnering about 4 percent support. 

Tags 2024 GOP primary Alejandro Mayorkas border wall Colin Allred immigration Joe Biden Mike Pence U.S.-Mexico border