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Trump: ‘We Will Build a Human Wall If Necessary’

Should Congress authorize troops at the border for law enforcement?

by Countable | 1.31.19

UPDATE - February 5, 2019:

  • President Trump has said he will build "a Human Wall if necessary" at the U.S.-Mexico border in order to keep unauthorized immigrants from entering the country.
"Tremendous numbers of people are coming up through Mexico in the hopes of flooding our Southern Border," Trump tweeted. "We have sent additional military. We will build a Human Wall if necessary."
  • The Pentagon announced Sunday that it's sending 3,750 additional military troops to the southern border.

UPDATE - February 4, 2019:

  • The Pentagon announced Sunday that it's sending 3,750 additional military troops to the southern border.
  • This will bring the total number of forces at the U.S.-Mexico border to approximately 4,350.
  • The new arrivals will assist Department of Homeland Security Border Patrol Agents in stringing up 150 miles of concertina wire between ports of entry and expanding mobile surveillance.

Read Countable's original story below.


What’s the story?

  • The White House has ordered “several thousand” more military troops to the U.S.-Mexico border.
  • Acting Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan said the latest dispatch of around 2,000 troops would provide additional support for the Department of Homeland Security’s border patrol efforts.
  • “DHS has asked us to support them ... and we’ve responded with: ‘Here’s how many people it would take’,” Shanahan told a news conference.

What will the troops do?

  • First, what they can't do: perform law enforcement duties. That would be a violation of the Posse Comitatus Act, which prohibits the use of active-duty service members for law enforcement within the U.S.—unless they are specifically authorized by Congress.
  • Shanahan said the new arrivals will help DHS meet its goals of stringing up concertina wire and expanding surveillance at the border.

What are Democrats saying?

  • Rep. Adam Smith (D-WA), the new chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, dismissed President Donald Trump’s claims that there’s a crisis at the border.
“There really isn’t much evidence of that crisis,” Smith said at the hearing. He pointed out the number of unauthorized immigrants apprehended at the border has fallen in recent years.
“Most of those people who went down to the border were sitting around playing cards because they didn't have anything to do because there was no invasion.”

What do you think?

Until the U.S. can “stop people at the border” should Trump bring in the military? Should Congress authorize the use of active-duty service members to patrol the U.S.-Mexico border? Take Action and tell your reps, then share your thoughts below.

—Josh Herman

(Photo Credit: iStockphoto.com / vichinterlang)

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