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Senate candidate says 50 state govs should deploy troops to southern border crisis

U.S Soldiers with 541st Engineer Company, Special Purpose Marine Air-Ground Task Force 7, position concertina wire on a practice barricade at Naval Air Facility El Centro in California, Dec. 4, 2018. U.S. Northern Command is providing military support to the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Customs and Border Protection to secure the Southern border of the United States. (Sgt. Asia J. Sorenson/U.S. Marine Corps)

Kevin Smith, a Republican candidate for U.S. Senate, called for all 50 governors to mobilize National Guard or available law enforcement troops to help crack down on illegal immigrants coming into the U.S. over the southern border.

In a letter to President Biden and the nation’s chief executives, Smith said the White House should designate Mexican drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations to give authorities more tools to seize their assets and stem drug trafficking into the U.S.

“Our border crisis is the worst it’s ever been, and deadly foreign fentanyl is pouring over the southern border and into our communities causing record overdoses,” said Smith, a former Londonderry town manager and state juvenile justice official.

“It is past time to view this fentanyl as a foreign weapon of mass destruction, and formally designate the cartels that traffic it as Foreign Terrorist Organizations.”

Smith also called upon Biden to remove Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas from his cabinet position.

Smith said Mayorkas failed to admit the southern border was a “crisis” and claimed his office “effectively managed an unprecedented number of noncitizens” entering the U.S.

“Nothing could be further from the truth and there hasn’t been anything effective at all about the lack of a strategy along the Mexican border,” Smith said.

Both party candidates pressing agenda

Immigration has clearly emerged as a major issue in this U.S. Senate race.

Smith was the first major GOP candidate to visit the border, which he did last February.

He then issued an immigration plan, which called for finishing the border wall, ending a catch-and-release border policy, ending sanctuary cities, and mandating E-Verify tracking nationwide on the hiring of undocumented workers.

Sen. Maggie Hassan made her own southern border visit to Texas and Arizona in April, her third during her first term in office.

Prior to the trip, Hassan attracted the ire of liberals in her own party by authoring bipartisan legislation calling on Biden to continue Title 42, a tough anti-illegal immigration policy that former President Trump had imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Hassan’s bill also called for Biden to come up with a comprehensive plan to deal with the surge in attempted illegal border crossings.

Retired Brig. Gen. and GOP hopeful Don Bolduc said some of his most difficult deployments during a 33-year military career were along the U.S-Mexican border.

He vowed to keep the pressure on Biden and recently praised the President for extending Title 42.

Last week, Senate President and GOP hopeful Chuck Morse went to McAllen, Texas, with three county sheriffs to meet with Border Patrol officials at the invitation of Gov. Greg Abbott.

“Getting to see firsthand the crisis Joe Biden and Maggie Hassan have created on our southern border,” Morse posted on social media during that trip.

Among the other GOP candidates, Lincoln businessman Vikram Mansharamani has highlighted the topic in the past, while Durham bitcoin millionaire Bruce Fenton has not.

“Our nation is a nation of immigrants. We win when we let refugees and immigrants come here ‘legally’ to pursue the American dream; we should make this as easy as possible for them,” Fenton posted on his website.

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(c) 2022 The New Hampshire Union Leader

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