Gov Brewer

Arizona Gov. Brewer tours Mexican border, calls for more security

by Cindy Carcamo, LA Times  |  published on February 17, 2013

A couple of weeks after a bipartisan group of senators declared that securing the border was key to enacting immigration reform, Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer reiterated her call to beef up security along the U.S.-Mexico border.

“It’s pretty obvious that Arizona once again is a gateway for the drug cartels,” Brewer told a crowd of reporters at a news conference Tuesday. Moments earlier, she had stepped off a Black Hawk helicopter, culminating an aerial tour of the U.S.-Mexico border.

During her stay in the region, Brewer visited with ranchers living along the border and met Border Patrol agents and members of the U.S. National Guard. During her sky-high tour, Brewer said, she saw people staging to cross into the U.S., garbage littering the desert and spots of the border with little or no fencing.

As she has in the past, the governor called for “more boots on the ground,” drones and more technology.

Not everyone agrees that more Border Patrol agents are needed.

Border Patrol staffing along the southern Arizona border is “right-sized personnel-wise,” said Jeffrey D. Self, Border Patrol Joint Field Commander-Arizona.

In an interview with the Los Angeles Times in December, Self said there was more of a need for technology along the border, such as mobile surveillance systems, than more agents.

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