Gov. Brown Resists Trump by Deploying National Guard Statewide

National Guard Will Patrol California Board

California to send 400 Guard troops to Mexico border

Jerry Brown agreed Wednesday to deploy 400 National Guard troops at President Donald Trump's request, but not all will head to the US-Mexico border as Trump wants and none will enforce federal immigration enforcement.

McGuire said the mission, formally called "Operation Guardian Shield", will extend through September 30, 2018.

Instead, Brown said the troops would join an existing program to combat transnational drug crime, firearms smuggling and human trafficking. Although New Mexico Gov. Susana Martinez has - as the Santa Fe New Mexican reports - "been critical in the past of the president's approach to border security and immigration", her office said this week the state is deploying 80 National Guard troops this week and expects to eventually deploy 250.

He says another 112 of the 338 troops that Arizona has committed to Trump's operation will provide border air support, such as flying helicopters, from a base in the town of Marana near Tucson.

A Pentagon memo released last week said none of the National Guard troops will perform law enforcement functions or interact with people detained by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security without Pentagon approval.

The governors of Texas, New Mexico and Arizona - all Republicans - applauded Trump's move and quickly began dispatching troops to the border region.

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The number of people caught trying to illegally cross the U.S. -Mexico border past year was the lowest since 1971, according to the federal Department of Homeland Security.

The governor stressed in his statement that the troops will not be used to "round up women and children or detain people escaping violence and seeking a better life". Where the additional personnel are located "will be dictated by the needs on the ground", Brown spokesman Evan Westrup said in an email.

As California and the federal government have sparred over immigration policy, Brown has faced political pressure in the Golden State to deny Trump's request. He said the program is "currently staffed by 250 personnel statewide, including 55 at the California border".

"Here are the facts: there is no massive wave of migrants pouring into California", Brown asserts.

The governor also noted that the state guard "agreed to similar targeted assistance" under the past two presidents. Brown noted in his letter that "immigrant apprehensions on the border last year were as low as they've been in almost 50 years".

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