By Debbie Gregory.
President Donald Trump wants to deploy members of the military to secure the U.S.-Mexico border until his promised border wall is built.
No time frame for the deployment has been announced.
Trump has promised to build a “big, beautiful wall” on the border since early in his campaign, claiming it will help secure the border. But Congress has yet to pass any meaningful funding for the wall’s construction, and federal law prohibits the use of active duty service members for law enforcement inside the U.S., unless specifically authorized by Congress.
Some 6,000 National Guard troops were deployed to the border in 2006, under president George W Bush. The troops did not participate in any law enforcement activity, but helped with surveillance and administrative tasks.
“We’re going to be doing things militarily. Until we can have a wall and proper security, we’re going to be guarding our border with the military,” Trump said, calling the move a “big step.”
In addition to mobilizing the National Guard, Trump and senior officials agreed on the need to pressure Congress to urgently pass legislation to close legal loopholes exploited by criminal trafficking, narco-terrorist and smuggling organizations
Among the new measures the administration is pursuing: ending special safeguards that prevent the immediate deportation of children arrested at the border and traveling alone. Currently, unaccompanied children from countries that don’t border the U.S. are turned over to the Department of Health and Human Services and undergo often lengthy deportation proceedings before an immigration judge instead of being immediately deported.