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Arkansas Gov. Sanders deploys National Guard to aid Texas with migrant crisis: 'Ready to assist'

Arkansas is sending troops to the southern border to help Texas with its efforts to limit illegal immigration amid a historic migrant crisis.

FIRST ON FOX: Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders is sending troops to the U.S.-Mexico border to help Texas in its efforts to tackle the ongoing migrant crisis -- just as Texas’ efforts to tackle illegal immigration got put on ice.

The Arkansas National Guard will send 40 Guardsmen to support Texas National Guard efforts between April 1 and May 30, Fox News Digital is told. The troops will be under the jurisdiction of Gov. Sanders, but the Texas National Guard remains the lead agency.

Arkansas is one of a number of GOP-led states that have deployed troops to Texas in the past. The Natural State deployed approximately 80 Guardsmen to the border in July last year and 40 in the summer of 2021.

Those deployed to the southern border by Arkansas will enhance the Texas National Guard’s surveillance and reconnaissance abilities and provide increased detection and tracking capabilities to their partners, the governor's office said.


The show of support comes as Texas remains locked in multiple legal battles with the Biden administration over its unilateral efforts to tackle the migrant crisis, including its building of razor wire along the border and a recent illegal immigration law allowing state and local law enforcement to arrest illegal immigrants. That law was just dealt another blow by the Supreme Court on Monday, when it extended a block on it in response to a request by the administration. The Biden administration sued to strike down the measure, arguing it would usurp core federal authority on immigration and create chaos.

In a statement to Fox News Digital, Sanders accused the administration of opening the border "to an invasion of illegal immigrants, drugs, and human trafficking and…criticizing Texas for stepping up where his administration has failed." 

"I’ve seen the crisis our President created firsthand and I know the incredible men and women of the Arkansas Guard can help supplement Texas’ efforts to keep our border secure and our states safe," she said.

"The Arkansas National Guard has a rich history of helping neighboring states in a crisis," Maj. Gen. Jonathan Stubbs, Arkansas’ Adjutant General, said in a statement. "We assisted Texas last year, and have done so under previous administrations. Our Soldiers will be well prepared and ready to assist the Texas National Guard’s operations."


The deployment comes amid concerns that the coming months could see another surge in migration across the U.S.-Mexico land border. There was a record of 2.4 million migrant encounters in FY 23, and December saw more than 300,000 encounters for the first time in recorded history. Meanwhile, disruption in Haiti has raised concerns about a new migrant wave coming from the Caribbean country – primarily by sea, but Haitians do also enter the U.S. via the land border.

Republicans have blamed the policies of the Biden administration, while the administration says it needs more funding and reforms from Congress in order to fix what it says is a "broken" system. It has called for the passage of a bipartisan Senate bill that would increase staffing and funding to the border. DHS recently unveiled a budget that includes funding for 350 new Border Patrol agents, 301 additional processing coordinators and 150 new CBP officers.

"It's real simple, it's time to act, it is long past time to act," the president said at the border this month, urging passage of the Senate bill. "It's time for us to move on this, we can't wait any longer."

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