Gov. Rick Perry of Texas plans to order 1,000 National Guard troops to his state's border with Mexico in an effort to stem the tide of immigrants illegally entering from Central America, dispersing around the country once they've made it into Texas.
Critics will call it a stunt and accuse Perry of showboating, but at least he is taking action, while President Obama, who took an oath to defend the country from all enemies foreign and domestic, drinks beer, plays pool and attends fundraisers as our borders are overrun. Enemies are more than adversary nations with weapons. An enemy can also be a person, or groups of people who, by their presence in a country, undermine its economy, strength and values.
Polls show a majority of Americans favor stopping illegal aliens from entering the country.
In a recent telephone survey by Rasmussen Reports, 59 percent of likely U.S. voters believe "the primary focus of any new immigration legislation passed by Congress should be to send the young illegal immigrants back home as quickly as possible." Only 27 percent think they should be allowed to stay.
The public isn't buying what they've been told by the media and some Democrats that the illegal immigrants are fleeing dangerous conditions in their own countries. According to Rasmussen, "Most voters (52 percent) believe they are coming to America for economic reasons." Just 31 percent think they're coming for their own safety.
Texas' border with Mexico is 1,200 miles long and 1,000 National Guardsmen won't make a significant difference, but as supplements to the U.S. Border Patrol they could slow the tide. The Guardsmen, however, might be useful in sending a message to Central American countries that the odds of making it into Texas are being substantially raised and the journey is not worth the risk. That message would counter what has been promoted in Central American media: that if you can get to America, you can stay in America.
During a 2012 Republican presidential debate, Perry defended giving in-state tuition breaks to illegal immigrants, saying those who opposed the practice don't have a heart. That was about immigrants already here. At the time, Perry says he warned the administration of the increasing number of unaccompanied children crossing the border. He claims the White House never responded to his concerns.
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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