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Arizona, Texas governors to get reinforcements for the U.S.-Mexico border

Border Patrol
Posted at 12:20 PM, Apr 19, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-19 19:45:48-04

DOUGLAS, AZ — In the desert regions of Cochise County, the Sheriff's department tracks the smuggling routes of drug traffickers. Some are caught, but many get away.

"This is not an immigration crisis. This is a border security crisis," Governor Ducey said Tuesday during his announcement of the formation of the American Governors' Border Strike Force.

26 states, including Arizona and Texas, will join to share intelligence, use cybersecurity in an effort to focus on cartel finances and drug trafficking routes along interstates 10 and 40.

It's a coordinated effort to take down the drug kingpins.

"It's time the Biden administration paid attention to the southern border. It's a federal responsibility. They won't do what the American Governors' Strike Force is going to do but we would like the partnership and support," Ducey said.

Ducey also expects states will provide resources along the border to help with effort.

The Governors' Border Strike Force is modeled after the one Arizona established in 2015.

In the nearly 7 years it's been in place, the governor's office says Arizona's Border Strike Force seized 985 pounds of fentanyl, 13,100 pounds of methamphetamine, 1,704 pounds of cocaine and 801 pounds of heroin.

"People that are addicted, people that are looking for a cheap high and that's coming over our southern border. but it's happening in small towns, rural communities in the interior," Ducey said.

The governors say the dramatic increase of immigrants trying to enter the U.S. is diverting federal resources needed to protect the border.

They claim the Biden administration is offering little help. A growing number of Democrats agree.

Earlier this month on a trip to the Arizona border, New Hampshire Senator Maggie Hassan in a video tweet from Nogales said, "It's clear the administration needs to address certain gaps on physical barriers that would be easy to address. But are posing a real challenge for our border patrol agents."

In March, the Department of Homeland Security reported the U.S. Border Patrol had more than 221,000 immigrant encounters along the Southwest Border.

The Biden administration is warning as many as 18,000 immigrants may cross into the U.S. everyday once Title 42 ends on May 23.

Senator Hassan joined with Arizona Senators Kyrstin Sinema and Mark Kelly in calling on the Biden administration to delay ending the program until it can produce a plan that secures the border first.