Arizona gubernatorial candidate Kari Lake unveiled a border security plan aimed at circumventing the federal government through the creation of an interstate compact.
Titled “Defend Arizona: We will do what Washington will not,” her plan will bring states together to use Article I, Section 10 of the U.S. Constitution to “declare their territories as under invasion and declare it their sovereign right to secure the borders of the United States.” Lake told The Arizona Sun Times, “The people of Arizona and the people of this country are dying to have real solutions to bring sanity and the security back to the border.”
On Tuesday, Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R-Texas) filed a lawsuit against the administration of Joe Biden over the federal vaccine requirement for members of the National Guard.
As reported by CNN, Abbott’s lawsuit declares that the vaccine mandate for the Texas National Guard infringes on “Governor Abbott’s authority as Commander in Chief and on Texas’s sovereignty,” and that “it is unlawful for Defendants to attempt to override the Governor’s authority to govern his troops, and then leave him to deal with the harms that they leave in their wake.”
The lawsuit is in response to a policy implemented by an August memorandum from Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, declaring that all members of the American military must be vaccinated or else face discharge. Austin declared that the mandate would include non-federalized National Guard members, such as state National Guards, and that any states that defied the mandate would face a funding freeze or see members be prohibited from engaging in military duties.
Yuma Mayor Douglas Nicholls is speaking up about the recent surge of migrants in the Yuma sector on Arizona’s border with Mexico, explaining why it’s occurring and recommending solutions. He believes there are several factors contributing to the 2,405% increase in migrant apprehensions, and says there are both long-term and short-term ways to resolve the problem.
“The ‘Remain in Mexico’ policy of the Trump administration was ordered put back in place by the courts, but that has not fully happened,” he told The Arizona Sun Times. “In 2019 and 2020, there were 50 to 60 migrants a day being returned under the policy. Now, there are only about 10 a day. With 1,000 coming across the border daily now, that’s only 1%.”
On Tuesday, a district court judge ruled against the state of Oklahoma in its effort to block the coronavirus vaccine mandate for members of the state’s National Guard, The Hill reports.
U.S. District Judge Stephen Friot explained his reasoning in a 29-page ruling, in which he rejected a motion filed by Governor Kevin Stitt (R-Okla.) and Attorney General John O’Connor (R-Okla.) to indefinitely block the mandate; Judge Friot claimed that the plaintiffs’ claim was “without merit.”
“The court is required to decide this case on the basis of federal law, not common sense,” said Friot in his ruling. “But, either way, the result would be the same. The claims asserted by the Governor and his co-plaintiffs are without merit.”
Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds is joining four other state governors in requesting the Department of Defense withdraw vaccine mandate directives to National Guard members in Title 32 duty status.
U.S. National Guard members’ deadline to be vaccinated was Dec. 2. Nearly 50,000 military members across all branches have declined to get vaccinated, Reynolds’ office’s news release said.
On Thursday, the state of Oklahoma filed a lawsuit to exempt members of the state’s National Guard from the nationwide coronavirus vaccine mandate, The Hill reports.
The suit, filed in federal court by Governor Kevin Stitt (R-Okla.) and Attorney General John O’Connor (R-Okla.), names Joe Biden and Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin as defendants. The suit requests that the courts declare the national vaccine mandate for all members of the armed services to be unconstitutional, and thus enjoin the federal government from enforcing it on the Oklahoma National Guard; the suit also seeks to prevent the federal government from imposing its penalty for refusal to comply, which would include withholding federal funds from the state’s National Guard.
“This mandate ensures that many Oklahoma National Guard members will simply quit instead of getting a vaccine,” the suit reads in part, “a situation that will irreparably harm Oklahomans’ safety and security.”
The Pentagon responded appropriately and in a timely fashion to urgent requests for National Guard assistance on the day of the Jan. 6 Capitol breach, according to a Defense Department inspector general report released Wednesday.
“We also determined that DoD officials did not delay or obstruct the DoD’s response,” reads the report.
Arizona Rep. Jake Hoffman (R-Queen Creek) sent a letter to Arizona Attorney General Mark Brnovich requesting a legal opinion on whether the Biden administration has failed its obligations at the U.S. border with Mexico. He is concerned there is an “invasion” taking place due to the vast numbers of illegal immigrants entering the country, the increase in crime, and the control the drug cartels have over areas along the border.
He wrote, “In light of the efforts by the new federal administration of President Joe Biden to encourage, rather than discourage, illegal aliens coming to our country, including by crossing the Arizona border illegally, I am writing to ask for your formal legal opinion of whether or not the federal government has failed — intentionally or unintentionally — to uphold its obligations to protect our state from invasion under Article IV, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution.”
Texas Republicans described President Joe Biden’s immigration policies as reckless and criticized him for claiming that he has been too busy to visit the southern border since taking office in January.
Biden said Thursday night that he “should go down [to visit the border] but the whole point of it is I haven’t had a whole hell of a lot of time to,” during a CNN town hall. The last time Biden was near the border was when he flew into an airport in El Paso, Texas, where his motorcade took him to New Mexico for a campaign event in 2008, according to The Washington Post.
Tens of thousands of migrants from other countries are making their way north to the southern border, an open border activist and government officials warn.
Irineo Mujica, Director of Pueblo Sin Fronteras, an NGO that provides “shelter and safety to migrants and refugees in transit” and accompanies them “in their journey,” says a new Haitian caravan is making its way to the U.S. border from Tapachula, Mexico.
He also says 800 Haitians and Central Americans are crossing the Guatemalan border every day making their way north.
A significant group of Arizona Republican legislators is calling upon Gov. Doug Ducey to declare a state of emergency over the crisis on the border between Arizona and Mexico. The 24 senators and representatives sent the letter to Ducey on Tuesday.
Rep. Leo Biasiucci (R-Lake Havasu), the Majority Whip, told The Arizona Sun Times, “I think all of America can agree that our southern border is a complete disaster. As this Biden-Harris administration continues to ignore our calls for help, thousands of illegal immigrants are pouring into our state daily. This administration is signaling to the world that we have an open border. Myself, along with my Republican colleagues at the Arizona Legislature, will not tolerate this lawlessness anymore. We are a land of law and order. But when the federal government fails at their duty to protect our border, it is up to us to uphold our oath to the constitution and do whatever it takes to help stop this invasion.”
A $2.1 billion bill to fund the Capitol Police, National Guard and resettlement of Afghans who helped U.S. troops sailed through the Senate Thursday afternoon on a 98-0 vote.
The bill was brokered by Vermont Democratic Sen. Patrick Leahy and Alabama Republican Sen. Richard Shelby, the two top lawmakers on the Senate Appropriations Committee. The deal, which also provides funding for COVID-19-related measures around the Capitol complex, was reached amid reports that the Capitol Police was set to run out of money in the coming weeks.
National Guard troops are slated to decamp from Capitol Hill this week, nearly five months after thousands were deployed to safeguard Congress amid fears of further unrest after the violent Jan. 6 insurrection.
Personnel will fully depart the U.S. Capitol grounds this week, military officials and congressional aides said Monday, nearly five months after thousands were deployed to safeguard Congress allegedly over fears of unrest after the Jan. 6 reported “attempted insurrection” by former President Trump supporters, Politico reported.