border security

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Rick Perry’s record on border security

As I’ve written before, Governor Rick Perry is for border control and has the record to prove it, in spite of very unique challenges in Texas.

Unfortunately, the Federal government which has the Constitutional duty to protect our borders has refused to fund the necessary manpower and equipment and has also been negligent in identifying, arresting, and deporting illegal aliens. Governor Perry has focused on border security to control illegal invasion in the first place, both in Texas and the greater United States. He advocates what he calls “boots on the ground:” patrolling the border, with agents, planes, drones, and helicopters.

Governor Perry supports strategically placed fencing in urban areas and not the rural fence that doesn’t work well when placed 1/4 mile from the Rio Grand. More here from National Public Radio. This article from the LA Times, gives an example of the unintended consequences of unwise placement of the fence, resulting in Texans whose homes have been fenced off from the rest of the US.

While there are National Guard troops on the 2000 mile border with Mexico, only 250 of the 1200 are deployed along the 1200 miles of Texas’ border. Perry has repeatedly asked for more. Read this news report from a year ago. He also pushed the Federal government to allow the military practice to their skills with unmanned Predator aircraft along our border (“They’ve gotta practice somewhere.”)

As a direct result of the Governor alerting Texas Republican Congressmen about President Obama’s plan to remove the National Guard after less than 6 months, we’ll have them longer. News report, here, from June, 2011 about the extension.

Texas (along with our costs from eleven ICE detention center detainees being dumped in the State by Homeland security, our support of Katrina refugees, and our natural disasters like Ike, wildfires, and tornadoes) is expected to pay for our own Guard if we want them here after September.

Watch and listen to Governor Perry talking with Fox News Greta van Susteren about the border, that “boots on the ground” phrase, and the problems with the fence. (You can see and hear the Texas Ranger helicopters in the background.)

He created the Ranger Recon force, sending 150 Texas Rangers (Motto:”One riot, one Ranger”) to the border along with helicopters and Texas Guardsmen, paid for with Texas state funds. “Operation Linebacker” and “Border Star” were efforts from 2006 and 2007: Gov. Perry Implements and Leads Operation Border Star From 2009: Gov. Perry Expanding Operation Border Star – Sends Rangers, Guard to the Border (2009)

Texas spends over $200 million a year on the cost of jailing illegal aliens that the feds bring here. In addition, we’ve spent $79 million of our own Texas tax funds on troops, helicopters.

When the Texas Legislature refused to fund his program to implement a “virtual border” using camera surveillance to augment “boots on the ground,” so he used money from the Governor’s discretionary fund.  In some cases, local sheriffs and cities refused to cooperate and their opposition impeded full implementation of the program.

The following are from the Governor’s News room:

Tuesday, June 07, 2011:  Gov. Perry Adds Sanctuary Cities to Special Session Call He also added bills to approve “Secure Communities” and a ban on Texas driver license for illegal aliens.

“Gov. Rick Perry announced the addition of legislation relating to the abolishment of sanctuary cities, the use of the federal Secure Communities program by law enforcement agencies, and the issuance of driver’s licenses and personal identification certificates to the special session call.

“Texas owes it to the brave law enforcement officials, who put their lives on the line every day to protect our families and communities, to give them the discretion they need to adequately do their jobs,” Gov. Perry said.

“Abolishing sanctuary cities in Texas, using the federal Secure Communities program and ensuring that only individuals who are here legally can obtain a valid Texas driver’s license sends a clear message that Texas will not turn a blind eye to those breaking our laws.”

Tuesday, May 10, 2011 Gov. Rick Perry on House Passage of House Bill 12.

Friday, May 27, 2011: Gov. Perry Takes a Major Step in Securing the Integrity of the Electoral Process;
Signs legislation requiring voters to present photo ID at polling places

Tuesday, June 28, 2011: Statement by Gov. Rick Perry Regarding Sanctuary City Legislation

2005: Gov. Perry works with the 16-member Texas Border Sheriff’s Association to deter illegal immigration and prevent border-related crime – Creates ‘Operation Linebacker” – Awards $6 Million to Border Counties for Border Security

2007: Gov. Perry Praises Progress of Statewide Radio Communications Capabilities

2009: Gov. Perry Announces Highly Skilled Ranger Recon Teams as Texas’ Latest Efforts to Enhance Border Security

2010: Governor Perry’s Letter to Barack Obama (2010)

2010: Gov. Perry: Federal Government Must Take Action To Prevent Spillover Violence from Mexico Requests Predator Drones and National Guard Troops along Border (2010)

2010: Governor’s Perry’s Homeland Security Strategic Plan for Texas, 2010 – 2015 (in pdf)

2010: Gov. Perry Releases Texas Homeland Security Strategic Plan 2010-2015

(Thanks to “casinva” at for many of these sources.)

Texas’ Federal Immigration Problems Add to “Border Security” Dilemmas

As I wrote before, Texas took our opposition to forced enrollment of illegal students in elementary and high school all the way to the Supreme Court. We fight for real border control every day, spend millions of our own tax money to supplement the border security and even try to use our own law enforcement to deport convicted criminals.

However, we’re constantly stymied by changing and ever more intrusive Federal rules and regulations.

Even that last requires cooperation from the Feds, and we can’t be sure that the criminals are deported or whether, as in the past, they’re just released into Texas.

“”But since the legislation passed, parole officials have worried that once they turned over custody of the parolee to federal officials, they might never know whether the felon was sent home or released in Texas if the deportation were to go awry.

“”That’s exactly what has happened in the past, parole officials said. They said over the past several years, several hundred foreign-born felons were paroled and released to federal officials for deportation but were not sent home — and instead were allowed to remain in Texas on parole, on state taxpayers’ dime.

“”Officials with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, in their first public comments on the new law, assured state officials Wednesday that convicts who are not deported will be handed back to state prison officials.””

And it doesn’t help that the Federal forces bring in criminals from all over the US to the 11 Immigration and Customs Detention centers.

Worse than that, though, the Department of Justice has been bringing us captured illegal aliens from other border States like Arizona that they then release in Presidio, Texas or Del Rio, Texas.

“”Under the program, the agency transports illegal border-crossers caught in Arizona to the Texas border and deports them back to Mexico. The Border Patrol first started the program in November 2009: Two buses per day, each loaded with up to 47 male illegal immigrants aged 20 to 60, were taken from Arizona to Presidio, where they were deported to Ojinaga, Mexico. The program generated heated resistance from state officials, including Perry, who worried about an influx of illegal immigrants, and from local officials, who said the remote area could not handle an onslaught of new people.””

Quotes from Rick Perry’s Fed Up! on Immigration, Amnesty and Border Security

I find my self looking for, copying and pasting these quotes over and over, so here’s a series of excerpts from Governor Rick Perry’s book showing that he’s not in favor of amnesty. From Fed Up!: Our Fight to Save America from Washington:

The Supreme Court—filled with nine unelected and unaccountable judges appointed to the bench for life—long ago wrested away from the people the power to decide what is right and what is wrong and, at the most fundamental level, how we should live our lives. Nothing could be more offensive to the concept of liberty and the principle of federalism. (pp. 94-95)


We can have all the immigration debates we want, but Americans are demanding that the border be secured first.

We have already been burned once by false promises of border security in exchange for tying security to other aspects of the immigration debate. President Regan, in 1986, signed the immigration reform and control act, which legalized close to 3 million undocumented immigrants. The law was supposed to be a comprehensive solution with provisions intended to clamp down on border security. These provisions were never enforced, and the subsequent explosion in illegal crossings has resulted in some 11 million illegal aliens living in the United States today an estimated 1.8 million illegal immigrants are currently residing in Texas, compared with 1.1 million in 2000. In ten years, that represents an increase of 54 percent or 70,000 persons each year coming to our state illegally. Today, the Pew Hispanic Center estimates than about one in ten people born in Mexico live in the United States. And all of this has occurred outside the system and to the disadvantage of others who have been waiting in line for many years. There are literally millions of people waiting to get into the country legally. pp.118-119


These levels of unchecked illegal immigration are unsustainable. We expend vast resources on illegal immigrants and our own security. State and local governments, which provide essential services like schooling and emergency health care to illegal immigrants, often under a mandate from the federal courts, bear the brunt of the immense fiscal burden. A 2007 study by the Congressional Budget Office reached several concussions relevant to this issue. Among them, the CBO pointed out that while most of the welfare or public assistance programs operated by the federal government, like Social Security, food stamps. And Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, are not available to illegal immigrants, the same federal government requires states to provide certain benefits to illegal immigrants in order for states to participate in programs receiving federal funds. Education is a good example. Emergency medical care is another; any health care facility receiving federal funds must provide certain care even for individuals who cannot pay for it, including many illegal immigrants.

A 2006 report by the Texas Comptroller’s office estimated the budgetary impacts of illegal immigration in Texas. The report found that approximately 135,000 undocumented students in Texas public schools cost the state $957million in just the 2004-2005 school year. Other studies using different population estimates and including federal spending have point to even higher costs of $1.2 billion (for the 2004-2005 school year) and $1.7 billion for the 2003 -2004 school year). The comptroller’s report cited incarceration and uncompensated healthcare as the two largest costs associated with illegal immigrants to local government entities in Texas These two items cost local governments $1. 4 Billion over a one year period.
Of course those living in Texas illegally also provide income to the state because of increased economic activity, sales taxes, and property taxes (either directly or through rent subsidizing the property owner). But adding the estimated revenues and costs to both the state and local governments, Texas taxpayers were out $928 million in 2005.
(p. 120 )


The State Criminal Alien Assistance Program (SCAAP) is a case study in the refusal of the federal government to do its job at our borders. SCAAP was created in 1994 to reimburse states for part of the cost of incarcerating illegal immigrants who commit crimes.

Naturally, however, SCAAP is more window dressing than real policy, as it is woefully underfunded. A study commission by the United States/Mexico Border Counties Coalition found that in 2006, border counties in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Texas on the Mexican border received a total of only $4.7 million in SCAAP reimbursements, representing 9 percent of the costs of handling illegal immigrants who committed state crimes. Among just those border counties in Texas, the reimbursement rate was a mere 3 percent. The reimbursement rate is so low that some counties do not even apply for funding because it is not worth the cost of paperwork.

This is a joke. Arizona governor Jan Brewer has calculated that her state alone is owed &700 million in SCAAP funds since2003. Former Arizona governor Janet Napolitano wrote in 2008 that “as governor, I must enforce the law and pay to incarcerate these individuals. The federal government just shrugs its shoulders and walks away from its statutory obligation” Now serving as President Obama’s Secretary of Homeland Security, she has not persuaded the federal government to step up to the plate.
The bottom line is that while our federal officials jealously claim exclusive authority over immigration and border policy, they avoid actually securing the border. While they mandate that state taxpayers provide services, they rarely confront any of the associated costs. In so doing, the federal Government refuses to fulfill its most basic constitutional responsibilities.
(pp. 121-122)


A grand, bipartisan compromise on immigration similar to the failed 1986 law was attempted in both 2006 and 2007. In the end, the bill died, largely because the American people had been to this rodeo before. According to an ABC News poll taken in the heat of the debate in 2007, two-thirds of Americans did not believe Congress was serious about controlling illegal immigration.

Now, the current administration willfully refuses to enforce the laws on the books. While President Bush didn’t do as much as I had hoped, his administration did step up workplace enforcement, reducing the enticement for illegal immigration. President Obama on the other hand, has reversed course. He also has intentionally undermined one of the few successful measures the federal government has implemented. Section 287 (g) of the Immigration and Nationality Act allows the deputization” of local law enforcement after training from federal authorities so that they may process illegal immigrants detained in the course of law enforcement activities for removal. This program simply allows local officials to aid Immigration and Customs Enforcement in the application of our laws.

Bowing to pressure from interest groups in favor of unchecked illegal immigration , the Obama administration has instead issued new requirements intended to curtail the program by making it more expensive, among other things. So the Federal government is now manipulating successful programs to stop willing local jurisdictions from doing the federal government’s job themselves. (pp. 122-123)

(footnotes on this part refer to the explanation about Section 287 (g) at

Perry, Rick (2010-11-15). Fed Up!: Our Fight to Save America from Washington . Little, Brown and Company. Kindle Edition.

The typos are all mine. I’ll fix what I can, when I can.

Background & Analysis | Federal Education Budget Project

I’m all for feeding children in our schools, but I would rather that we controlled our border better so that we did not have so many who were “migrants.” I’m convinced that it’s not healthy for kids to grow up in shadow families who must always worry about getting caught.

I’m also convinced that the Federal authorities know exactly which of the kids on the free and reduced lunch program are illegal. For one thing, the applications ask whether a child is a “migrant.” They also ask for the last 4 digits of the guardian’s Social Security number, along with a box to check if “I don’t have a Social Security number.”

“The National School Lunch Program is an appropriated entitlement to all eligible children living in the United States regardless of citizenship status.

“Students are entitled to free lunches if their families’ incomes are below 130 percent of the annual income poverty level guideline established by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and updated annually by the Census Bureau ($29,055 for a family of four in 2011). Children who are members of households receiving food stamp benefits or cash assistance through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families block grant, as well as homeless, runaway, and migrant children, also qualify for free meals.”

via Background & Analysis | Federal Education Budget Project.

Japanese troops on the Great Wall of China

My husband and I visited the USS Arizona Memorial at Pearl Harbor, this week. I couldn’t help but relate the events of December, 7, 1941 to those of September 11, 2001. Listening to the stories of the people who were suddenly under fire from an enemy from the sky, who saw friends and family shot and bombed, was almost too much to bear. The sight of the Arizona underwater, where all those men died without warning when bombed and their ammunition supplies blew up, reminds us that there are men who will kill, without warning, for power.

The source of that picture is here.

The museum at the Park has a series of videos telling the story of Pearl Harbor and World War II, and a movie that everyone watches on the way to the shuttle boats that take you to the Memorial. Since there’s been so much talk lately about building a wall along the Texas-Mexico border, one particular image caught my eye: movie footage from the early 1930’s, showing Japanese troops marching on the Great Wall of China. I thought it was propaganda from the war department, but no, it really happened.

“Chinese and Japanese representatives met in the Tanggu district of Tianjin starting on 22 May 1933 in an attempt to end the undeclared war between China and Japan. Japan demanded that a demilitarized zone be established 100 kilometers south of the Great Wall, and Japan was to be given possession of the Great Wall itself. Also, Japan demanded that Japanese units were to be allowed to patrol the demilitarized zone. The Chinese government agreed to all Japanese demands and signed the document on 31 May 1933.”

See more about the First Battle of Hebei or Operation Nekka, here.

I had just read that some wanted to build a similar wall all along our Rio Grande,  and had even read one candidate, Herman Cain, wanted to build our own version of  “The Great Wall of China.”

It wasn’t for lack of a wall that China lost much of her land to Japan. It was the lack of men and materials to defend the wall.

We already have Mr. Cain’s “moat,” although without the alligators. It’s called the Rio Grande. Our farmers and ranchers along the Rio have water rights that allow them to make a living and grow food for Texas and the United States. The fence makes it harder and more expensive for them to do their jobs and does nothing to stop illegal aliens and drug runners from coming into the US, because our Border Patrol agents are too few and far between to respond and apprehend criminals, even when alerted.

The fence only works where there are frequent patrols and response from near by. It does not work if there’s no one to respond to breaches. A fence is straight, the river curves back and forth. So, the Feds build it inside the border, not on the border, giving up land that is U.S. soil.

In the meantime, they cut off homes from the rest of the State, they deprive Texas farmers and ranchers their rightful access to their own property and to their water rights. This not only leaves wide swaths of the United States outside of normal defense, it makes it more expensive to run the farms, the ranches, and even regular households.

The next time you hear someone say that we need a fence along the Rio Grande, I hope you remember the Great Wall of China. We need men and materials to defend our border, not a wall between Texas and the Rio Grande. Read more about the border, here.

(Edited to add a source for the picture of the soldiers on the wall and a couple of lines about the effects of the fence on farmers and ranchers. BBN)

Help Texas fight illegal immigration instead of Rick Perry

Texans spend nearly a billion dollars a year on illegal residents’ K-12 education, under the force of YOUR Federal government. If you are offended by our Governor Rick Perry’s support of our policy on in state tuition, I’d think you would spend at least the same amount of Tweets, CAPS, Exclamation Points! and Italics on that atrocity. What have you done in your State to give us relief?

Here in Texas, we live with the fact that the Federal government is ignoring all the families who put their kids  in our schools in grades K-12. It’s not hard to determine who these families are: the children are the ones without Social Security numbers or Medicaid coverage, yet qualify for free lunches.Your Federal government must be aware of these children, yet forces us to pay for their schooling and absorb their medical costs.

We passed laws to keep them out of our schools, and were knocked down by the Feds, even though we fought the case all the way to the Supreme Court. Did your State pass similar laws, or join us in Plyler v. Doe</U>?

We continue to petition the Feds to increase the security of our National borders, as required by the Constitution. We spend hundreds of millions of our own Texas tax dollars to supplement your National border.  Has your State joined us in asking for more border patrol agents, or are you happy with us getting a quarter of the agents to cover 2/3 of the border?

After a while, it became obvious to us in Texas that we couldn’t get the illegal alien – either the students or their parents – deported. We saw that there is a small number of students who excel and wish to go to college. We decided that the ambitious and achievers would be allowed to go to our State colleges, paying in state tuition under very strict guidelines.

There are qualifications for these exceptions to the in state tuition. One of them is specifically for a narrow set of applicants and requires 3 years in Texas high schools and graduation from one of our schools. In contrast, we have much easier qualifications for legal residents in the US. If you live in a county that borders Texas, in New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arkansas, or Louisiana, your children don’t have to establish residency in Texas in order to pay in state tuition rates. If you live outside Texas, your children may become residents in one year or if you are stationed in our State while in the military or qualify as a Texas veteran. We don’t care where they went to high school or where they graduated.

If you only became aware of our border problems because Governor Rick Perry is running for the Republican Party’s nomination President, then he’s done a service for Texas. If you are outraged by the idea of in state tuition for the children of illegal aliens, then I hope you will help us secure our border and demand that the Federal authorities deport all illegal aliens

AP MISLEADS READERS ON RICK PERRY: Cherry-Picks His Statement on Border Security & Lies About Audience Reaction | The Gateway Pundit

The AP deleleted the part of Perry’s speech that including using “strategic fencing” and National Guard troops on the border.

via AP MISLEADS READERS ON RICK PERRY: Cherry-Picks His Statement on Border Security & Lies About Audience Reaction | The Gateway Pundit.

Blogger Gateway Pundit tells us about more completel reports that tell the whole story, including “Weasel Zippers” and WHIO TV.

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