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Former Washington Journalist
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Donald Trump is pledging to send further US troops to the border with Mexico to assist Border Patrol agents in their efforts to apprehend migrants and otherwise stem the tide of immigration through the southern border.
“We’re going to put more troops on the border. We’re going to — and you know, the thing is, our country’s doing so well economically. We’re setting records that a lot of people are coming up for that reason,” Trump said from the White House. “A lot of people are coming up for bad reasons, too. We have a lot of very, very bad people with big criminal records trying to get through. And the Border Patrol’s done an incredible job with them. Those are our focus.”
Trump first began sending US troops to the southern border last fall ahead of the 2018 midterm elections, as a wave, or so-called “caravan” of migrants from Central America north toward the United States.
US troops on the border are prohibited themselves from undertaking domestic law enforcement, but support Border Patrol agents who do.
This week, in an interview with Vice President Pence, CNN journalist Dana Bash noted, “The president tweeted last night the following: ‘I think what the Democrats are doing with the border is TREASONOUS. Their open-border mindset is putting our country at risk. Will not let that happen.’”
Addressing the vice president, Bash said, “I know you generally say that the president has his own style of talking, but to use the word ‘treason,’ which is supposed to be punished by death, how do you get from that rhetoric to working across the aisle the way you are talking about that’s needed to fix things here?”
“I think what you hear the president expressing is the frustration of the American people,” Pence replied. “Last month alone, more than 100,000 people came across our southern border illegally.”
Democrats, particularly those in the US House, have led the way in trying to block Trump’s ultimate policy goal, which is construction of a wall or barrier along the southern border. Most recently, the House was authorized to take legal action against the “state of emergency” Trump declared in order to bypass Congress and use military funds for wall construction.