Arizona Governor Doug Ducey has sent National Guard troops to the state’s section of the U.S. southern border, and has issued a state of emergency in response to the influx of illegal immigrant coming across the border.
On Tuesday, Ducey’s office announced that, “the state will provide up to $25 million in initial funding for the mission.” This includes roughly 250 guardsmen assisting border communities with medical care in detention centers, installing surveillance cameras, and other services.
Ducey’s declaring a state of emergency makes Arizona the first state in the union to do so. Gov. Ducey said of the Biden administration’s handling of the border crisis, that it is “totally divorced from reality.”
Ducey added, “I said last month that the Biden administration is totally divorced from reality. Now, at times it seems like they fully understand the reality and they’re putting their heads in the sand and trying to ignore it anyway.”
NEW: The federal government won’t act — but Arizona will. To address the crisis at the border, I’ve issued a Declaration of Emergency and am deploying the brave men and women of our @AZNationalGuard to support law enforcement efforts and protect Arizonans. pic.twitter.com/EdFkiM2C5t
— Doug Ducey (@dougducey) April 20, 2021
Arizona Democrats Understand The Real Border Situation
Governor Ducey has received the support of Arizona’s two Democrat Senators. Sens. Kyrsten Sinema and Mark Kelly sent a letter to President Joe Biden urging him to reimburse Arizona for deployment of the National Guard.
Kelly has also issued a separate letter explaining the situation at the border, calling it a crisis, and requesting additional resources, staffing, transformation, and testing “necessary to provide a secure, orderly process that does not fall on Arizona communities.”
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The situation at the border shows no sign of getting better any time soon. The latest numbers from U.S. Customs and Border Protection paint a grim picture.
For the month of March alone, CBP apprehended over 170,000 people. Of those apprehensions, roughly 19,000 of those were unaccompanied minors.
Reuters reported that CBP expects more than one million immigrants to arrive at the border this year. This number is similar to the 2019 number of 978,000 during the Trump administration.
Today, we’re voting on two immigration bills that do nothing to fix the border crisis.
On the contrary, these bills make it harder on Border Patrol to carry out their job and make our border less secure.
This is what Democrat priorities look like.
— Rep Andy Biggs (@RepAndyBiggsAZ) April 21, 2021
Texas Governor Already Called National Guard To Border
Ducey is not the first Governor of a border state to call up its National Guard. Texas Governor Greg Abbott deployed troops to its southern border in March, but did not declare a state of emergency.
Gov. Abbott pointed blame at the Biden administration’s immigration policies. “The crisis at our southern border continues to escalate because of Biden Administration policies that refuse to secure the border and invite illegal immigration,” he said.
Texas appears to be taking the lead on addressing border issues.
In a somewhat rare display of bipartisanship, Sens. John Cornyn (R-TX) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) have introduced legislation aimed at curbing the surge on the southern border.
Fox News reports that the bill would address the Biden administration’s ability to handle the surge at the border, attempt to establish immigrant asylum claims in a timely manner, and also deter those who are unlikely to be approved.
The joint bill would also protect unaccompanied minors.
Earlier this month, Gov. Greg Abbott launched an investigation into three separate possible child abuse allegations at a San Antonio housing unaccompanied minors. The Freeman Coliseum is currently housing 1300 individuals.
— Newsmax (@newsmax) April 22, 2021
Arizona Governor Calls Out Administration On Border Crisis
Late last month, President Biden put Vice President Kamala Harris in charge of addressing the border crisis.
The Biden administration drew criticism for its characterization of the border situation. The president himself had not called the situation at the border a crisis until just this weekend.
On Monday, however, White House press secretary Jen Psaki clarified that Biden’s use of the term “crisis” was in reference to the situation in Central America, not the surge at our border.
Republican elected officials are not having it. Governors and many Congressmen and Senators are putting the blame for the border crisis squarely on the shoulders of Joe Biden.
Gov. Ducey slammed the Biden administration for its inaction on the border.
“It’s become evidently clear that Arizona needs the National Guard, and the White House is aware of that. Yet, to this day, there has been no action from this administration, and it doesn’t look like they are going to act any time soon. If this administration isn’t going to do anything, then we will.”
Since being put in charge of the border, Vice President Harris has yet to visit the area, or any of its detention facilities.
Republican Lawmakers Request Meeting With VP Harris
Fox News reports that on Monday top Republicans on three House committees requested a meeting with Harris “to discuss the Biden-Harris administration’s response to the catastrophe on the southern border.”
In the letter to Harris, Reps. Jim Jordan (R-OH), John Katko (R-NY), and James Comer (R-KY) stated that,
“Over two weeks ago, President Joe Biden delegated the administration’s response to the humanitarian and security crisis at the southern border to you. However, it is unclear what, if any actions you have directed or plan to initiate to respond to the crisis that continues to worsen each day,”
Harris described her role as mainly “diplomatic” in response to the Congressmen’s request. She also said that she will be addressing the “root causes” of the problems at the border.
For the time being, on Monday, the administration ordered ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) officials, along with CBP officials, to avoid using terms such as “illegal alien”, “alien”, and “assimilation”, and instead are being asked to use the words “noncitizen”, “migrant”, “undocumented”, and “integration.”
President Biden picked VP Harris to address the border crisis, but for 27 days, she has failed to take action.
In that time, what was a humanitarian crisis has also become a national security and public health emergency. pic.twitter.com/tNWVSZ0Qlu
— Kevin McCarthy (@GOPLeader) April 20, 2021
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