Customs & Border Chief Knocks Down Trump’s ‘Minor’ Tear Gas Claim: There’s Only One Kind


Kevin McAleenan, appointed by President Donald Trump to be Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, threw a bit of cold water on the assertion from his boss that a “minor” form of teargas was used on migrants at the U.S. southern border.

Trump, speaking with reporters on Monday night in Mississippi, defended his administration’s tactics at the border by saying agents used a “minor form” of tear gas and it was “very safe.”

But McAleenan did not back up Trump’s assertion. Appearing on Cuomo Prime Time Monday, McAleenan was asked by host Chris Cuomo, “Is there such a thing as the good kind of tear gas? Every tear gas I have been hit with has been nasty.”

McAleenan replied by saying the gas was standard issue for law enforcement. Cuomo followed up by asking if there’s only one kind of tear gas. The Customs and Border Protection chief’s reply?


“It’s in our equipment inventory. All of our agents have to experience it before they carry it, much less deploy it.”

When asked why the gas was used on a crowd filled with women and children, McAleenan defended the gassing by noting that border patrol was under threat, and the gas brought a non-lethal end to the situation. As for the women and children, McAleenan said it was “unfortunate that parents are putting their children at risk and bringing them into that situation to try and to rush through the border illegally, and being present for that kind of interaction.”

“If people are throwing rocks nearby, you’re facing law enforcement professionals, it’s not a good place to have your child.”

Watch above, via CNN.

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