Gov. Henry McMaster was among a group of governors who met with President Donald Trump at the White House earlier this week.
He said the big topic of discussion was immigration.
“The fact of the immigration necessities that we have in the country and his appreciation of the governors who were there,” McMaster described the talks. “One of them, of course, Doug Ducey, from Arizona, was the governor to whom we are sending troops.”
Earlier this month, McMaster offered to send South Carolina National Guard troops to border states to assist with patrols. Three South Carolina Army National Guard Soldiers and the UH-72 Lakota departed for the Texas border mission on Monday.
President Trump invited the five governors to the White House to thank them for sending troops to help patrol the country’s southern border.
Border security was discussed at the dinner. President Trump said they’re working on joint efforts to stop illegal immigration and illegal drugs crossing the border.
“We have weak laws given to us by weak people in Congress,” Trump told the group, according to video posted by C-SPAN.
Among the governors attending the meeting and dinner were McMaster, Ducey, Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant, Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson and New Mexico Governor Susan Martinez.
“We stand strongly with the President,” McMaster said. “He’s doing the right thing. He’s taking the country in the right direction and the economic growth and prosperity that we see here in South Carolina as well as around the country is proof of the fact that he’s taking us in the right direction and I appreciate what he’s doing.”
President Trump also was complimentary of the five governors at the meeting Monday.
“They’re doing a fantastic job,” he said.
McMaster also said he was able to discuss some South Carolina issues with President Trump’s staff.
“We discussed a lot of things,” he said. “I had separate meetings with his staff. We talked about the port. We talked about the MOX facility. We talked about the troops at the border.”
It was not clear if McMaster’s conversation on MOX had any impact. Energy Secretary Rick Perry is continuing to maneuver to close the facility, where construction has been in a holding pattern for several years. The Department of Energy has proposed ending the experimental nuclear fuel project and replacing it with plutonium pit production. South Carolina has threatened to sue the agency.