Alaska Gov. Mike Dunleavy joined 23 other Republican governors in responding to Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s call for assistance to secure the Texas border with Mexico.
The governors’ joint statement comes in response to last week’s expiration of Title 42, a public health authority that allowed swift deportation of those who entered the United States illegally during the Covid-19 pandemic.
“The federal government’s response handling the expiration of Title 42 has represented a complete failure of the Biden Administration,” the governors said in a statement.
“While the federal government has abdicated its duties, Republican governors stand ready to protect the U.S.-Mexico border and keep families safe,” the GOP governors said.
“All states have suffered from the effects of deadly illegal drugs coming across the border, and every state is a border state due to the devastating influx of drugs in our communities. Republican governors are leading the way to address the border crisis by increasing fentanyl sentencing and increasing support for law enforcement interdiction of drugs, among other measures.
“Texas Governor Greg Abbott has exemplified leadership at a critical time, leading the way with Operation Lone Star, and deploying the Texas Tactical Border Force to prevent illegal crossings and keep the border secure. We support the efforts to secure the border led by Governor Abbott.”
No Democratic governors responded to Gov. Abbott’s May 16 request for assistance and Democratic governors of neighboring border states of New Mexico, Arizona, and California have not made similar appeals as Gov. Abbott.
Abbott, in his letter requesting assistance, highlighted the gravity of the situation, emphasizing that the consequences of the border crisis extend beyond Texas: “The flood of illegal border activity invited by the Biden Administration flows directly across the southern border into Texas communities, but this crisis does not stop in our state.”
Mexican drug cartels and transnational criminal enterprises are exploiting the chaos to smuggle drugs like fentanyl and facilitate criminal activities nationwide, Abbott said.
Biden policies pose the most significant national security threat since 9/11, the Republican governors said, adding that at least 125 known or suspected terrorists have been apprehended while illegally crossing the southern border during this fiscal year.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has pledged specific support to Texas:
- 101 Florida Highway Patrol Troopers
- 200 Florida Department of Law Enforcement Officers, in teams of 40
- 20 Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission Officers
- 800 Florida National Guard Soldiers
- 20 Emergency Management Personnel – including radio technicians, logisticians, mechanics and planners
- Five available fixed wing aircraft with monitoring equipment and downlink capabilities with two aviation crew teams
- Two Mobile Command Vehicles and two command teams
- 17 available unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) and support teams
- 10 vessels – including airboats, shallow draft vessels, and mid-range vessels
Since Biden assumed office, more than 7 million people crossing the southern border have been apprehended or were reported to have evaded capture by law enforcement.
In response, the Biden Administration recently dispatched 1,500 military troops and thousands of federal employees from the Department of Homeland Security to expedite the processing of foreign nationals into the United States.
The Administration has emphasized that the intent is not to block entry but to facilitate the entry process.