California Governor Gavin Newsom said on Monday that he is ready to withdraw hundreds of the state's National Guard troops from the U.S. -Mexico border, a rebuke of President Donald Trump's stance that a national security crisis is unfolding there.
Instead of dedicating their time to border security, the governor plans to sign a general order to have troops redeployed to provide support on two initiatives: wildfire prevention efforts and operations to counter drugs and cartels in California, including surveillance at worldwide points of entry.
100 troops for intelligence operations targeting drug cartels. Newson is expected to easily top the field in the race for governor, but former Los Angeles Antonio Villaraigosa and state Treasurer John Chiang are among the Democrats hoping to box out Republican John Cox and make it a one-party showdown in November for the state's highest office.
Newsom has been sharply critical of Trump's immigration policies, noting that the president's proposed border wall is unpopular in California and assailing Trump's State of the Union speech for "stoking fear and spreading hatred" by "manufacturing a border crisis". "This is our answer to the White House: No more division, xenophobia, or nativism", Newsom said.
Now-California Governor Gavin Newsom attends "Families Belong Together - Freedom for Immigrants March Los Angeles" at Los Angeles City Hall on June 30, 2018 in Los Angeles, California. Brown allowed Trump to deploy the National Guard on the state's border, only if they weren't used to enforce immigration laws.
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"It's comedy", Newsom said of the current border policy.
"The lawless state of our southern border is a threat to safety, security and financial well-being of all Americans", Trump said. Constantly pointing to threats from illegal immigrants, Trump has made building a wall on the U.S. -Mexico border a priority of his presidency.
The troops were deployed previous year by then-Gov.
When Brown, a fellow Democrat, approved the mission in April, he said no California troops would participate in immigration-related activities. He similarly ordered the troops to focus on combating transnational crime.
Just a month into his governorship of the nation's most populous state, Newsom has sparred with Trump on immigration and other issues. Brown said he agreed to the National Guard mission after persuading the federal government to pay for it and to keep the guard members under the direction of the state of California.