Arizona Governor Doug Ducey declared a state of emergency at the state’s southwest border on Tuesday, and pledged to deploy 250 National Guard troops to aid local law enforcement with border patrol efforts and allocate $25 million to finance the National Guard mission.
“The U.S. Border Patrol is overwhelmed. Local law enforcement and mayors are calling out for help,” Ducey said in a recorded statement.
“Citizens and our border communities are concerned for their safety and nonprofits, left to pick up the pieces of broken federal policies, are strained,” he continued.
Arizona is the first state to declare an emergency as the Biden administration struggles to manage the influx of migrants arriving at the U.S. border with Mexico. Arizona is the second state to send the National Guard to the border. Texas Governor Greg Abbott deployed troops to the border in early March, although he did not declare a state of emergency.
The office of the Arizona governor said in the statement that service members will be sent to border communities to assist with medical demands in detention centers, examine satellites for evidence of smuggling, install and monitor border cameras, and collect data from public safety cameras.
Ducey remarked, “I said last month that the Biden administration is totally divorced from reality. Now, at times it seems like they fully understand the reality and they’re putting their heads in the sand and trying to ignore it anyway.”
U.S. Customs and Border Protection data indicates that Border Patrol apprehended 172,331 migrants in March. 48,587 of the undocumented individuals were unaccompanied migrant children.
Ducey blamed the surge in undocumented border crossings on the Biden administration’s immigration policies.
“The numbers don’t lie, this drastic surge is a direct result of the bad policy, coming out of Washington, D.C., and yet we still haven’t received an adequate response from the Biden administration,” Ducey said.