Pensacola, FL – Florida Governor Ron DeSantis announced during a press conference at the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office on Wednesday that he was sending law enforcement officers from the state to Arizona and Texas to help them deal with the border crisis.
On June 10, Arizona Governor Doug Ducey and Texas Governor Greg Abbott together sent a letter to the governors of all 48 other states asking for help.
Ducey and Abbott asked their fellow governors to send them law enforcement officers to help battle the illegal immigration crisis that has overwhelmed their states’ borders with Mexico.
DeSantis answered the call on June 16 and announced that Florida would be the first state to step up to the plate and offer support, WFLA reported.
“America’s border security crisis impacts every state and every American,” DeSantis said. “The Biden administration ended policies implemented by President Trump that were curbing illegal immigration, securing our border, and keeping Americans safe.”
“Governors Abbott and Ducey recently sent out a call for help to every state in the nation, needing additional law enforcement manpower and other resources to aid with border security,” he continued. “I’m proud to announce today that the state of Florida is answering the call. Florida has your back.”
U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) said there were more than 180,000 illegal border crossings into the United States along the southwest border in May alone, WFLA reported.
DeSantis said that more than a dozen Florida law enforcement agencies had already committed to sending personnel to assist at the border.
The list of volunteers so far included the Florida Highway Patrol (FHP), the Florida Department of Law Enforcement (FDLE), the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Brevard County Sheriff’s Office, the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office, the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office, the Holmes County Sheriff’s Office, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office, the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office, the Santa Rosa County Sheriff’s Office, and the Walton County Sheriff’s Office, WFLA reported.
“We’re here today because we have problems in Florida that are not organic to Florida that we’ve been forced to deal over many years, but particularly over the last six months because of the failure of the Biden administration to secure our southern border,” DeSantis said. “And, indeed, to really do anything constructive about what is going on in the southern border.”
He made the announcement flanked by law enforcement officials and explained how problems on the southwest border were impacting his state, the Pensacola News Journal reported.
A massive influx of methamphetamine was at the top of the governor’s list of new issues.
“I can tell you, if you talk to some of these North Florida sheriffs, in Northwest Florida who are dealing with the meth problem that we’re seeing, it’s really ravaging communities particularly in the northern part of our state,” DeSantis said. “If you go back 10, 20 years ago, you’d find where they’d be cooking this stuff up locally. It’s almost all coming across the southern border now, and it’s accelerated in the last six months.”
Florida Attorney General Ashely Moody also appeared at the press conference to express her support for the initiative, the Pensacola News Journal reported.
Moody said Florida had been suffering because illegal immigrants who were entering the United States via Mexico were being sent to other states.
The attorney general pointed the finger directly at President Joe Biden, the Pensacola News Journal reported.
In Florida, she said sexual assaults committed by illegal immigrants were up along with drug crimes.
The Arizona and Texas governors requested that states send contingents of officers in 16-day increments, the Pensacola News Journal reported.
DeSantis said plans were underway to send the assistance but no departure date has yet be set.