The administration claims that it is consolidating, but the move has sparked protests from Border Patrol agents concerned that they will now be overwhelmed.
[A]t least one Border Patrol supervisor in Texas has called on local officers to “voice your concerns” to elected officials, warning that the “deactivation” will remove agents from the Texas Panhandle, among other places. Several members of Congress have asked Border Patrol Chief Michael Fisher to reconsider the plan. And local officials are getting worried about what will happen once the Border Patrol leaves town, since they rely on those federal officials to assist in making immigration arrests.
“It could impact us tremendously since we’ve only got two agents up here now for 26 counties,” Potter County Sheriff Brian Thomas told FoxNews.com.
Potter County, in the Texas Panhandle, would be affected by the planned closure of the Amarillo station.
Thomas said that while his area is far from the border, it’s still a major “corridor” for illegal immigrants — and he said his office depends on Border Patrol to respond to their calls.
“I can’t hold a carload of people out there on I-40 for eight hours while somebody comes from El Paso,” he said. “I mean, that’s just crazy.”
It may be crazy, but it is consistent with an administration that has switched to a policy of non-enforcement in a desperate bid to pander to leftist Hispanics and the open borders crowd (most Hispanics do not regard tearing down the border as a good idea). The administration has announced a policy allowing young illegal aliens who meet certain criteria to stay and even receive work visas, a de facto amnesty, and has also reprioritized overall enforcement so that only illegal aliens with prior serious convictions will face deportation. From a law enforcement perspective, that amounts to repudiating the “broken windows” theory by which Rudy Giuliani was able to clean up then crime-ridden New York City.
The message of that latter policy to illegal aliens is clear: You can commit all the identity theft and low-level crime you want as long as you don’t get caught too often. But kill someone and the Obama regime just might get serious about you. Maybe.
Now on top of that message, the station closures may send another: The borders for all practical purposes are in the process of being erased.
Border Patrol’s resident agent in charge in Amarillo expressed similar worries, in a recent memo to local law enforcement alerting them to the planned closure. The official, Robert Green, warned that the “entire complement” of two agents would be reassigned from Amarillo to somewhere closer to the border. He said “there is no active plan” right now for Immigration and Customs Enforcement to fill the void on assisting local officials with stops.
Empathizing with local officials, he wrote: “As a former deputy I found myself on the other end of the radio hoping to contact USBP to assist me with a vehicle full of undocumented foreign nationals on the side of the road.”
And in an unusual plea, he urged the recipients of his memo to contact elected officials about the change. “I would encourage you, if you have found USBP assistance valuable in the past, to contact your political representatives and voice your concerns,” Green wrote.
Texas bears the brunt of the closures, losing five out of the total of nine stations to be closed. Of course. This administration hates Texas and the feeling grows more mutual by the day.