LatinaLista -- The argument all along from Republicans as to why they will not move forward on immigration reform has been their contention that not enough is being done to secure the border.
Even after President Obama pledged to send 1500 National Guard troops, it wasn't enough. So Senators McCain and Kyl submitted their own border security plan last week. Titled the 10-Point Plan To Better Secure The U.S.-Mexico Border In Arizona, it does exactly that -- secures only Arizona.
Some of the measures proposed in their plan entail:
Immediately deploy 3,000 National Guard Troops along the Arizona/Mexico border, along with appropriate surveillance platforms, which shall remain in place until the Governor of Arizona certifies, after consulting with state, local and tribal law enforcement, that the Federal Government has achieved operational control of the border.
Complete the 700 miles of fencing along the border with Mexico and construct double- and triple- layer fencing at appropriate locations along the Arizona-Mexico border.
Provide funding for additional Border Patrol stations in the Tucson Sector and explore the possibility of an additional Border Patrol sector for Arizona.
Require the Federal government to fully reimburse state and local governments for the costs of incarcerating criminal aliens.
Aside from requiring the federal government to reimburse for the incarceration of criminal aliens, the two senators from Arizona seem to think their's is the only border with Mexico that counts.
Considering that it's Juarez, Mexico that has been the scene of not just the biggest jump in real violence but the only border town where U.S. Embassy officials, or family of embassy employees, have been murdered by Mexican violence, McCain and Kyl's plan serves as a glaring example of how the GOP continues to politicize this issue to the detriment of constructively combatting it.
Today, the Democrats released their own border security plan. While I'm not a cheerleader of this plan, and frankly see it as nothing more than another waste of time pandering to a group who has exhibited no intention of delivering on any promises to move forward with immigration reform, the Democrat's plan does take into account the whole U.S.-Mexico border.
It's the kind of approach that is needed for there to be serious talk and headway, in not just securing the border, but making it safe for the border agents who have to confront drug smugglers and human traffickers, the innocent immigrants who get caught in the crossfire of either drug smugglers and U.S. law enforcement or Mother Nature and geography and the residents who live along both sides of the border.
It's time politicians stopped playing with border security because in the end, it's playing with human lives -- and that never turns out well.