The Latest: Texas governor says Guard impact ‘meaningful’
WESLACO, Texas (AP) — The Latest on the deployment of National Guard troops to the U.S.-Mexico border under a plan formed by President Donald Trump to combat illegal immigration and drug trafficking (all times local):
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott says sending National Guard members to the border “has proven to have a meaningful impact” on immigration and crime.
The Republican on Tuesday reiterated plans to put more than 1,000 National Guard members into action.
That comes after President Donald Trump said last week he wants 2,000 to 4,000 National Guard members stationed along the entire 2,000-mile (3,200-kilometer) U.S.-Mexico Border.
Trump says the Guard is needed to combat what he has called a crisis of migrant crossings and crime.
Texas had already kept a presence of about 100 Guard members on the border for several years.
The number of migrants apprehended at the southwest border plunged at the start of Trump’s presidency but have started to rise in line with historical trends.
U.S. Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen will head to New Mexico for an update on President Donald Trump’s proposed border wall.
Her trip announced Tuesday comes as National Guard members continue arriving on the border under orders from Trump.
Republican governors in Texas, Arizona and New Mexico have committed at least 1,600 Guard members so far.
Nielsen is scheduled to visit new border wall construction efforts near the small town of Santa Teresa on Thursday.
Officials say the 20-mile (32-kilometer) stretch in a sprawling desert separating the U.S. from Mexico will be at least 18 feet (5.5 meters) tall.
Trump has said he wants to use the military at the border until progress is made on his proposed border wall, which has mostly stalled in Congress.
The Texas National Guard said Tuesday that another 300 service members are reporting for duty this week.
Some National Guard members have started arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border with more expected as federal government officials seek ways to curtail illegal immigration.
The Republican governors of Texas, Arizona and New Mexico on Monday committed 1,600 Guard members to the border, giving President Donald Trump many of the troops he requested to fight what he’s called a crisis of migrant crossings and crime.
The only holdout border state was California, led by Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown, who has not announced whether troops from his state’s National Guard will participate and has repeatedly fought with Trump over immigration policy.
Under the federal law Trump invoked in his proclamation calling for National Guard troops, governors who send troops retain command and control over their state’s Guard members and the U.S. government picks up the cost.