Arizona Governor Jan Brewer hit the Sunday show circuit this morning and joined other governors on CBS’s Face the Nation to discuss immigration, among other things. When asked if she supported Senator Marco Rubio’s efforts on immigration reform, Brewer said:
Well, I think that it’s wonderful that everybody is coming together in cooperation to find a solution. And I’m very, very appreciative of Senator Rubio in stating and encouraging that before anything is done that we have border security established. And then I think we can move forward.(CBS News)
The Senate framework calls for an independent commission to assess border security and report to Congress, and the proposal is that this be done before moving to other phases of the reform. President Obama’s plan, however, doesn’t put as much emphasis on border control. Brewer points out that this has been addressed previously.
We need to secure our border first and then move forward. I feel very, very strongly about that. I think the people of — certainly of Arizona agree with that. And I think that’s going to be a stumbling block trying to get something done. You know, a president whom I admired promised the border security to us, and when they moved forward last time and it didn’t happen, and we are still faced with a very insecure — unsecure border. I was just down at the border, it is not secure…(CBS News)
Brewer claims that she, HERSELF, sees drug cartels all the time.
I mean, I saw them. We see them all the time. You can talk — I visually saw them. They’re staging and they’re staging during the day, and they come across at night. (CBS News)
I would have a hard time believing that Jan Brewer is out at the border at night hanging out with border control. Note how she started to say “you can talk…” then broke it off and stuck with something that will be harder to disprove than the governor of the state claiming she had a chat with drug cartels.
She feels that fences and more National Guard will solve the problem.
Our fences aren’t complete. The Border Patrol is too far north. They need to be closer to the line. And we certainly need more National Guard on the ground. We have National Guard in the air, but we need more National Guard on the ground. (CBS News)
She claims that people are living in fear for their lives.
And people are living down there in fear of their lives, and in fear of the safety of their families. And we are the recipients of all the crime that is taking place, extortion, the human trafficking, the prostitution, the cost in jails. It is — it’s a bad problem. (CBS News)
But most of all, as she screams for more federal help, she really doesn’t appreciate everyone meddling in her business.
And then to sit in Arizona and listen to people 3,000 miles away making decisions affecting our lives on a daily basis, people that have lived on those ranches for hundreds of years seeing what has taken place to their livelihood, is wrong. It’s wrong in America. (CBS News)
I’m really stunned to see that Brewer’s main cry is for fence completion. Most rational people, and for certain those who live in border states, know that though fences can help in some areas, fences are in no way the solution. Even my ridiculous governor, Rick Perry, was ridiculed when he asserted, in the GOP presidential primaries, that a fence was not a solution. Ralph Basham, Former Commissioner of U.S. Costums and Border Protection, explained on U.S. News.
Building a physical fence along the entire border with Mexico was one of the dumbest ideas I heard when I was commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. It is critical to recognize that fencing (even with barbed wire, electrification, and possibly a moat filled with alligators) is not a solution, it is only a tool. (CBS News)
It can help in some areas. The thing is, people who have never visited the border have this image of a perfect, seamless border along the Rio Grande. Not so. In some areas, it’s rugged and mountainous.
None of the fencing is impenetrable. People will eventually dig under it or cut through it or go over it, but it gives you enough time to respond and apprehend them. Some fencing makes sense tactically in areas selected by the Border Patrol, as where we deployed some 700 miles of it under my tenure, and in many of those areas it has been a tool to provide permanent impedance to deter and slow illegal entries on foot or by vehicle. (CBS News)
He also pointed out that while threats from the south are not to be discounted, border towns actually have a lower crime rate than many U.S. cities.
While the threat of violence by drug organizations is real, average violent crime rates in cities along the U.S.-Mexico border are lower than in comparable cities elsewhere in the U.S. Despite the drug violence that has claimed thousands of lives in its sister city to the south, Ciudad Juárez, El Paso recorded only 5 murders in 2010. (CBS News)
So as for Brewer’s constitutions living in fear for their lives, it’s likely that they are in no more danger than other people are throughout the U.S.
You can watch her here:
I am an unapologetic member of the Christian Left, and have spent a lot of time working with “the least of these” and disadvantaged and oppressed populations. I’m passionate about their struggles. To stay on top of topics I discuss, subscribe to my public updates on Facebook, follow me on Twitter, or connect with me via LinkedIn. I also have a grossly neglected blog. Find me somewhere and let’s discuss stuff.