California pulls some troops from border
California Gov. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, said Monday that he is withdrawing most of the state’s National Guard troops from the Mexican border. He said he plans to leave 100 of about 360 currently deployed state troops to help the federal government fight drug crime. Withdrawal will begin immediately but may not be completed until the end of March. Former Gov. Jerry Brown, also a Democrat, agreed in April 2018 to deploy up to 400 troops to the border after President Donald Trump requested support from four border states. At the time, Brown said California troops could not aid in immigration enforcement, but Newsom said there’s a “gray area” in their duties.
“This whole thing is the theater of the absurd, and California has had enough,” he said. The Trump administration has not responded.
The troops have not participated in immigration detention, but have conducted camera surveillance that could indirectly aid in immigration enforcement, Maj. Gen. David Baldwin of the California National Guard said. The governor of New Mexico also pulled most of that state’s National Guard personnel from the border last week. Texas and Arizona still have troops on the border.
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