Rick Perry greets Obama on Dallas tarmac
By: Katie Glueck
July 9, 2014 01:16 PM EDT
Texas Gov. Rick Perry greeted President Barack Obama on the tarmac in Dallas on Wednesday and joined him on the Marine One helicopter on their way to a roundtable gathering.
The pair were expected to discuss the troubled border one-on-one ahead of the session with faith leaders and other elected officials.
Perry, a Republican and potential 2016 presidential contender, has been pushing Obama to come to the Texas border with Mexico to see the influx of illegal immigrants, many of them minors, gathering there in what’s been described as a mounting humanitarian crisis.
But the White House has resisted pressure to have Obama visit the border, though the president was expected to address the crisis later Wednesday.
Perry had previously declined to greet the president at the Austin airport and, in a letter to the White House, asked for a private meeting instead to discuss the border. After Perry’s letter, Obama’s team invited the Texas governor to join Obama at the roundtable.
In Dallas, the governor and the president shook hands, and Obama clapped the Republican on the arm as they walked across the tarmac together. Perry spokesman Travis Considine confirmed the two would meet one on one.
The president’s visit to Texas also includes a fundraiser, party events, and a speech about the economy.