While Lou Dobbs is not one of my favorite people on television, Gov Richardson is even less favorite for being honest. In an interview they were discussing illegal immigration and the situation along the border. Both men failed to relate the truth when it came to Homeland Security and what the Administration is doing with the Border Patrol. Lou Dobbs is focussed more on the fence and bashing Bush than admitting there has been a substantial increase in agents. Gov Richardson is focussed on Immigration Reform and keeping the National Guard on the border.
According to the GAO and the Border Patrol they will have an estimated 15,020 Border Patrol Agents along the Southwest border by Dec 2008. Currently the Customs and Border Patrol have a new class scheduled twice a week every month until Dec 2008. They will increase the number of agents by 4,790 by year's end. So many new agents are being run through the Academy that the Border Patrol administration is complaining whether the reduced time for training is sufficient enough. Their academy in Artesia, New Mexico has always been considered one of the toughest law enforcement Academies to pass. A large number of new recruits are prior military and some have law enforcement training but even their previous training does not equal the amount of physical and academic training they must endure in this reduced training schedule. As Americans have always done, the new recruits are stepping up to the challenge and passing their exams and qualifying in higher than expected numbers. By the end of Dec 2008 the Border Patrol may reach the Administrations goal of 6,00 new Border Patrol agents. If the increase continues the number of agents along the Southwest border will increase from 12,349 in 2006 to 18,319 or more by Dec 2008.
It is easy to say the Bush Administration is doing nothing if the public is never informed. Gov Richardson says he wants the size of the Border Patrol doubled, but he like most Americans doesn't know all the training a Border Patrol Agent must have before they can ever put on the badge. Because the risks involved with being an agent to both the agent and his family are so high, most agents living in cities close to the borders will not divulge their occupation to the general public. Even with the high risks involved and the most strenuous screening process in the federal government, applications continue to at an all time high. This tells me Americans want our borders secure and they are willing to do what it takes to make sure they are secured.
Gov Richardson doesn't want the fence installed but criticizes the President for pulling out the National Guard in July. The Nation Guard are not guarding the borders. They are not in a law enforcement capacity. They are helping to build fences in certain areas and carrying out administrative duties for the Border Patrol. Unless they are given a new mission their set mission will be completed by July. Gov Richardson is using the border issue as an opportunity to continue to bash the President because Bush is a Republican. Remember Gov Richardson continues to defend his decision to give illegals a driver's license and believes the Mexican President Calderone is doing a great job.
Lou Dobbs continues to use the border to bash Bush and Congress because he calls himself an Independent. Bashing the government is good for ratings. He is starting to do the same thing with the Border Patrol that he does every night on the Iraq war. He pointed out that since 2008 2 Agents have been killed along the border and list the number of assaults. He does not mention one was an accident involving an agent in a vehicle rollover. When he gives the numbers of Americans killed in Iraq he does not mention that some of the dead were accidents and not insurgent related. This gives Americans the wrong impression about what is really going on. The fact is more Americans are killed in our own cities than they are in Iraq and the last I heard our cities were not being occupied or under insurgent attacks. Due to the increase in new agents, assaults and apprehensions are down leaving the agents to concentrate more on not only drug and human smugglers, but also gangs in cities deeper within our borders.
Raids are being conducted around the country. 900 captured in California and 400 in Postville Iowa to just name a couple. Change is happening whether Lou Dobbs or Gov Richardson likes it or not.
Bottom line, it's getting harder to believe anything on the "news" anymore.