Rep. Don Bacon (R-Nebraska), who is considered one of the more moderate members of the House Republican Conference, endorsed former President Donald Trump on Wednesday. But the Republican waffled when asked if his endorsement would withstand a felony conviction.

During an interview with CNN congressional reporter Manu Raju, Bacon said that despite his criticism of Trump, the race “was a choice between two people,” following both Trump and President Joe Biden clinching enough delegates after the Georgia primary to become the presumptive nominees of their respective parties.

“The number one issue in our district — number one, number two and number three — is the border,” Bacon said.

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“If he’s convicted of a crime would you still support him?” Raju asked.

“It’s a hypothetical, we’ll take it one step at a time. But obviously we don’t want someone who’s gonna be prosecuted for a crime,” Bacon responded.

“Would you want a felon as your nominee?” Raju pressed.

“No, we would not,” Bacon said. “But I would say we still have national security threats in our country.”

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Trump has made crime and border security a centerpiece of his 2024 campaign, alleging a “migrant crime wave” necessitates the mass detainment and deportation of millions of undocumented immigrants. However, crime data from both recent years and from the last decade shows no evidence of higher crime being linked to an influx of unauthorized immigrants. In fact, NBC News parsed crime data and found that native-born Americans and second-generation immigrants actually commit crime at a much higher rate than undocumented immigrants.

Crime numbers also don’t back up Trump’s assertions that the United States has become a crime-ridden country under Biden’s leadership. 2023 saw the biggest drop in year-over-year urban homicide rates on record, including in some of the largest US cities like New York, Los Angeles, Chicago and Detroit. FBI data also shows that other violent crimes, like rape, aggravated assault and robbery are also trending downward. Governing magazine reported in January that property crime rates have been on a gradual downward trajectory for decades.

Rep. Bacon notably didn’t specify which border he was referring to, as Nebraska’s 2nd Congressional District (which encompasses the Omaha-Council Bluffs metropolitan area) is only 613 miles from Winkler, Manitoba, but 990 miles from Ciudad Acuña, which are the two closest border towns to his district.

Watch the video of Raju’s interview with Bacon below, or by clicking this link.

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