Missouri governor announces troop deployment to southern border

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Missouri Gov. Mike Parson (R) announced Tuesday the state will deploy up to 200 members of its National Guard and 22 state highway patrol troopers to the border in an effort to heed Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s (R) request for support.

Parson said he made the decision after witnessing “the crisis” on a trip to the border two months ago, placing blame on President Biden for what he described as a “wide open” border.

“The crisis at the southern border is fueling the fentanyl crisis here in our state. Missourians are dying, families are being ripped apart, communities are being destroyed, and Missouri children are falling victim,” Parson said Tuesday during a press conference at the state Capitol.

“It all stems from the Biden administration’s reckless, irresponsible, and failing open-border policies,” he continued. “With our southern border wide open, every state is now a border state.”

The governor pressed Biden and other government officials to “step up” to curb the flow of migrants and the movement of drugs into the United States.

“We’ve waited long enough,” Parson argued. “Missouri will act by deploying our own resources to secure our nation’s border.”

In making the announcement, Parson joins a growing list of Republican governors who said they would dip into their states’ own emergency funds to assist Abbott in his standoff with the federal government — which has taken legal action against some of the Texas governor’s efforts to stem migration.

The decision comes as Abbott and the Texas National Guard appear to continue building razor-wire barriers along the southern border, defying a recent Supreme Court decision that gave the Biden administration authority to remove the barriers.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem (R) similarly announced Tuesday that she would answer Abbott’s call for help by sending 60 soldiers to the border, which she called a “warzone.”

Parson’s executive order activates the Missouri National Guard and the governor’s discretionary emergency response fund. Under the order, guardsmen would be deployed on a rotating basis of 30 days, beginning by March 10.

The state troopers volunteered for the mission, Parson said, and will begin active support by March 1.

The Missouri governor also sent a $2.3 million supplemental budget request to his state’s Legislature “to support border security efforts and backfill the Governor’s Office’s emergency response fund.”

Biden and Democrats have pushed back on Republican efforts to blame them exclusively for problems at the southern border, most notably calling attention to GOP efforts to kill a bill that included a border security agreement the president endorsed. He argued the bill also had “the toughest and fairest set of border reforms in decades.”

The border deal was attached to a larger foreign spending package that included aid for Ukraine, Israel and partners in the Indo-Pacific region. The broader agreement collapsed, however, and the Senate moved forward with Plan B — a bill focused solely on foreign aid.

While the Senate passed the aid bill, with support from nearly half of the upper chamber’s Republican members, Speaker Mike Johnson (R-La.) has refused to put the bill on the House floor for a vote.

 

by BY SARAH FORTINSKY for The Hill