Troops are needed in the global warming fight.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom plans Monday to withdraw several hundred National Guard troops from the state’s southern border with Mexico in defiance of the Trump administration’s request for support from border states.
About 100 of the 360 troops will remain deployed under California’s agreement with the federal government to focus specifically on combating transnational crime such as drug and gun smuggling, Newsom spokesman Nathan Click said. Specifically, they will be tasked with providing intelligence on transnational crime and assist with cargo dock operations and searches of commercial trucks for contraband.
Newsom’s move comes on the heels of New Mexico Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham, also a Democrat, pulling back her state’s troops from the U.S.-Mexico border. The two state’s former governors agreed to send troops to the border last April at the Trump administration’s request along with Texas and Arizona.
Newsom’s and Grisham’s actions are a fresh, if symbolic, affront to President Donald Trump’s description of an immigration crisis on the nation’s southern border.
“The border ’emergency’ is a manufactured crisis, and California will not be part of this political theater,” Newsom plans to say in his Tuesday State of the State address, according to excerpts released by his office.
Newsom will reassign roughly 110 troops to beef up California’s fire preparation efforts ahead of the next wildfire season and expand the guard’s counterdrug task force program. The expansion of the counterdrug task force requires approval from the U.S. Department of Defense.