Border Roundup: Border life examined, presidential plan to be unveiled
Fernanda Santos described daily life for Border Patrol from rural desert patrols to after hours dormitory life while Michel Marizco talked to law enforcement and officials about how security success is measured along the border.
Nogales Port Director Guadalupe Ramirez held a press conference Tuesday about a seven-ton marijuana seizure made on Jan. 15 at the Mariposa Port of Entry in Nogales. The seizure of the 600 bales (estimated value up to $12 million) occurred during the inspection of a 1994 International tractor-trailer on January 15. The driver, a 26-year-old man from Nogales, Sonora, was turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations.
Agents at New Mexico's Lordsburg station also seized six tons earlier this week, they announced Friday. Two Mexican nationals were arrested in connection with the 13,000 pounds of marijuana (estimated value $10.9 million).
State and federal officials will take over law enforcement work in two cities on key drug trafficking routes in the Mexican state of Durango, Gomez Palacio and Lerdo, after over 150 local police officers were arrested for suspected ties to organized crimes.
With a mandatory employment verification system up for discussion as part of comprehensive immigration reform, Jude Joffe-Block took a look at lessons learned about E-Verify in Arizona. Going into effect in 2008, Arizona was the first state to include all employers in its E-Verify mandate. While a third of new hires may not even be going through the system, it is also known for producing both false positive and false negative results, an issue that could possibly be fixed by costly upgrades. Yet E-Verify may provide peace of mind to employers if they're ever audited by ICE.
Mayors from cities on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border told Congress that the way to improve their economies and diplomatic ties lies through immigration reform and investing in infrastructure at ports of entry.
Politics and policy
President Obama's proposal for comprehensive immigration reform will include a path to citizenship and be unveiled Tuesday in Las Vegas, the White House said.
Connor Radnovich reviewed imigration advocates' reactions to President Obama's inaugural speech and Matthew Longdon talks lawmakers and applicants to the federal deferred action program for young illegal immigrants who are pressuring Gov. Jan Brewer to rescind her order banning the Motor Vehicle Division from issuing driver's licenses to approved applicants. At least two bills addressing these driver's licenses have been introduced and another is under discussion. Brewer's decision is also being challenged in federal court.
Peter O'Dowd looked into the role of Arizona politicians John McCain and Jeff Flake in the Gang of Eight, a group of bipartisan Senate lawmakers working on immigration reform and Julian Aguilar looked at the positions that politicans along the border are taking in the discussion of gun control issues.