More Border Enforcement

Again, despite the rhetoric of some, the US does continue to enforce laws relevant to the border and, indeed, enforcement has been on the rise.

Contra some claims (for example), the federal government is not only continuing its normally activities on the US-Mexican borders, but even in the context of difficult fiscal circumstances, more money has been appropriated to hire border patrol agents and such.

Via ABC:  Obama to Sign $600M Border Security Bill Friday

The border security measure would fund the hiring of 1,000 new Border Patrol agents to be deployed at critical areas along the border, 250 more Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, and 250 more Customs and Border Protection officers.

It provides for new communications equipment and greater use of unmanned surveillance drones. There are currently seven such drones along the border. Almost one-third of the money goes to the Justice Department to help agencies such as the FBI, the DEA and the ATF deal with drug dealers and human traffickers.

See also the BBC:  Obama signs $600m US-Mexico border bill.

One of the continued ironies of the current immigration/border security debate is that because of the current political climate that the Obama administration is actually taking a harder line on border enforcement than did the Bush administration (as I noted here, for example).  And yet, many are claiming the opposite (e.g., Jan Brewer, Tom Tancredo, etc.).

Of course part of what all of this also illustrates is that the current system doesn’t work all that well and continues to underscore the need for comprehensive reform.  Alas, no political coalition exists to undertake such a task.

FILED UNDER: Borders and Immigration, US Politics, , , , , , , ,
Steven L. Taylor
About Steven L. Taylor
Steven L. Taylor is a Professor of Political Science and a College of Arts and Sciences Dean. His main areas of expertise include parties, elections, and the institutional design of democracies. His most recent book is the co-authored A Different Democracy: American Government in a 31-Country Perspective. He earned his Ph.D. from the University of Texas and his BA from the University of California, Irvine. He has been blogging since 2003 (originally at the now defunct Poliblog). Follow Steven on Twitter


  1. Greg Weeks says:

    An even greater irony is that the bill gets paid for by drastically increasing the fees companies pay for legal skilled immigrants in the H2B program, thus making legal immigration more difficult.

  2. Yup.

  3. Greg Weeks says:

    That should be H1B…

  4. Zelsdorf Ragshaft III says:

    What a load of crap! There is no tie between border security and immigration. There is however a need to stop the illegal invasion of our country by those who do not respect our laws or our sovereignty. There should not even be any discussion of what to do with those who have already invaded our country until we secure our borders. Particularly the southern border. Notice how we do not seem to be having much problems with our northern border. Build a fence and shoot anyone who trying to climb over it. Mexico cannot prevent the United States from doing anything. We should take a couple of armored divisions put them on the border and warn Mexico if they cannot control their border with us, we will crate a buffer zone between us and them with them giving up the territory. F these people and all those who do not think the US has a right to protect itself. It is not about immigration. Immigration is a legal act. Invasion is what is going on at our southern border. Immigrants come to the gate for entry. Invaders hop the fence. Lying liberal bastards alway misuse terms like immigration to accomplish what they know is against the will of the American people. If those who think they can get more democratic voters by allowing those who would be beholding to the government entry and amnesty, they need to pay attention to the extreme anger of the American people. I get the feeling there is a gun fight comming.