California Deploys National Guard Troops - But Not To Stop Immigration
Apr 12 2018
Jerry Brown agreed Wednesday to deploy 400 National Guard troops at President Donald Trump's request, but not all will head to the US-Mexico border as Trump wants and none will enforce federal immigration enforcement.
"Let's be clear on the scope of this mission, " Brown wrote in a letter to the Trump administration.
He says they will not "round up women and children or detain people escaping violence and seeking a better life".
Brown also said that, "there is no massive wave of migrants pouring into California".
Mattis followed that up by issuing a memo Friday night that authorized up to 4,000 National Guard troops to support the Department of Homeland Security's border security mission.
California's "sanctuary" policies limiting cooperation with USA immigration agents have been a target for Trump's ire, and in his most recent weekly address he called the state "a border-free zone where thousands of criminal aliens can roam free".
Border states Texas, Arizona, and New Mexico have already accepted the move.
"Overall immigrant apprehensions on the border last year were as low as they've been in almost 50 years (and 85 percent of the apprehensions occurred outside of California)".
As California and the federal government have sparred over immigration policy, Brown has faced political pressure in the Golden State to deny Trump's request.
Instead, Brown said the troops would join an existing program to combat transnational drug crime, firearms smuggling and human trafficking.
Trump has taken credit for that decline, but in March the number of arrests and denials of entry at the Mexico border jumped to more than 50,000, the single-highest one-month total since the president took office. This program is now staffed by 250 personnel statewide, including 55 at the California border.
The state's guardsmen provided "targeted assistance" in 2006 under then-President George W. Bush and in 2010 under President Obama.
Brown said the deployment will happen pending review and approval of the federal government.
In a statement, DHS spokeswoman Katie Waldman said Secretary Nielsen "is pleased to have the support of all four border governors to help secure our southwest border".
The California National Guard will accept federal money to beef up border security, Democratic Gov.
In contrast, Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott, who is contributing 1,000 troops, embraced Trump's mission the day it was announced, saying it would promote the rule of law and "help ensure we are doing everything we can to stem the flow of illegal immigration".