"I encourage the President to temporarily send National Guard troops to the border until the Border Patrol has the resources it needs to gain operational control. If we can call out the National Guard to deal with a hurricane, then it surely makes sense to call out the Guard to deal with a situation that has far greater national security implications.Anyone J.D.? Well I'm "anyone" and I wasn't insulted, in fact I was so intrigued by this notion of "militarization" that I looked it up (what a concept, eh?).
"But this cannot be a sham deployment like the one Arizona Governor Napolitano ordered. Instead of patrolling, Arizona National Guard troops are currently just checking trunks, changing oil, and fixing computers. We need Guard troops to physically patrol the border.
"As for Mexican President Vicente Fox's concern that the border will become militarized, don't make me laugh. There are areas all along the border that already resemble a war zone. The border has already been militarized by the drug smugglers, human smugglers, and Mexico's own military. Anyone living along the border will tell you that Fox's concerns are not only absurd but insulting as well."
militarization - NounI'd like to order a double-wammy helping of JD's ire from Shrubzilla's performance last night, please. First, regarding the "sham deployment" characterization.
act of assembling and putting into readiness for war or other emergency: "mobilization of the troops"
The Border Patrol now operates under the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). I wonder what the DHS Secretary thinks about the "sham"?
[BUSH:] So I'm announcing several immediate steps to strengthen border enforcement during this period of transition.
One way to help during this transition is to use the National Guard.
So in coordination with governors, up to 6,000 Guard members will be deployed to our southern border.
BUSH: The Border Patrol will remain in the lead. The Guard will assist the Border Patrol by operating surveillance systems, analyzing intelligence, installing fences and vehicle barriers, building patrol roads, and providing training.
Guard units will not be involved in direct law enforcement activities; that duty will be done by the Border Patrol.
"I think it would be a horribly over-expensive and very difficult way to manage this problem," Chertoff said. "Unless you would be prepared to leave those people in the National Guard day and night for month after month after month, you would eventually have to come to grips with the challenge in a more comprehensive way."Oops. So much for a consistent message...
linkage - TPMmuckraker
Now back to J.D.'s statement. He obviously doesn't care much for Governor Napolitano. Thanks to the Arizona Republic, here's some salt for his wounds.
In a matter of minutes, President Bush transformed Arizona's statewide debate over immigration Monday.No wonder the sound of Republican heads popping can be heard across the land, this election-year issue just might get passed in the same way it advanced from the Senate Judiciary Committee: a majority vote that doesn't include a majority of the majority.
He announced a federally funded plan to deploy National Guard troops to the state's southern border, a move Gov. Janet Napolitano had been pushing for since January. The Democratic governor for months had urged the federal government to pay the tab.
During his address, Bush sounded more like Napolitano than like conservative Arizona lawmakers who have pushed more hard-line policies. Like Napolitano, Bush said the National Guard would play a supporting role and assist the Border Patrol by handling such tasks as, "operating surveillance systems, installing fences and vehicle barriers and building patrol roads."
The weaker the Republicans become politically, the better chance we have of ending this long nightmare beginning in November. The words Congressman Harry Mitchell sure have a nice ring to them, don't you think?
[UPDATE] The Arizona Republic has Harry Mitchell's response to last night's speech. Linkage is here. (hat tip to Geo)
“The bill passed by the House late last year may make for good sound bites, but it is not a realistic approach to comprehensive immigration reform. This is a serious problem and needs a serious solution. If the House ends up killing urgently needed, realistic, comprehensive immigration reform, I don’t think voters in Arizona will appreciate it.
“Furthermore, I applaud the president for tonight urging the nation and the Congress to debate this issue with the tone and respect it deserves. My opponent tried to use this issue to divide our nation, not unite it. His remarks about Arizona’s governor showed a lack of respect for our state, and a failure to grasp how important this issue is to all Arizonans.”