The Republican governors of Texas and Arizona sent a letter Thursday to governors across the country asking for law enforcement resources to confront the growing crisis on the country’s southern border.
“In response to the ongoing surge of illegal border crossings, with the accompanying threats to private property and to the safety of our citizens, Governor Abbott has declared a disaster and Governor Ducey has declared an emergency,” said the letter, which was described as an “urgent request” for reinforcements.
The two border-state governors blamed the crisis on the Biden administration.
“When it comes to the Biden Administration’s open-border disaster, our greatest need is for additional law enforcement personnel and equipment,” they wrote.
Abbott and Ducey said that under the emergency and disaster declarations and the governors’ compact, out-of-state officers have jurisdiction to arrest people streaming across the border illegally.
“With your help, we can apprehend more of these perpetrators of state and federal crimes before they can cause problems in your state,” the governors wrote.
“Texas and Arizona have stepped up to secure the border in the federal government’s absence, and now, the Emergency Management Assistance Compact gives your State a chance to stand strong with us,” they said.
Governors of the two other border states, New Mexico’s Michelle Lujan Grisham and California’s Gavin Newsom — both Democrats — did not participate in the request for resources on the border.
The letter from the two Republicans was sent out the same day Abbott declared that Texas would begin building its own border barrier in the absence of federal government interest in securing the border.
“President Biden’s open-border policies have led to a humanitarian crisis at our southern border as record levels of illegal immigrants, drugs, and contraband pour into Texas,” Abbott said in a statement.
“While securing the border is the federal government’s responsibility, Texas will not sit idly by as this crisis grows.
“The state is working collaboratively with communities impacted by the crisis to arrest and detain individuals coming into Texas illegally. Our efforts will only be effective if we work together to secure the border, make criminal arrests, protect landowners, rid our communities of dangerous drugs, and provide Texans with the support they need and deserve.”
Abbott then said Texas would begin a process to use its own funds to fortify the border.
“This is an unprecedented crisis, and Texas is responding with the most robust and comprehensive border plan the nation has ever seen,” the governor said.
The governor’s office said Abbott would allocate “more than one billion dollars to increase border security” and “more details will be provided next week. “
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