Immigration enforcement is not simply a matter of humane treatment of asylum seekers. Trump administration policy at the border is having a negative impact on a vital source of revenue for cities in southeastern Arizona. According to USA Today story, wait times rose to as much as ll hours during the Thanksgiving holiday period because of increased security procedures and lane closures at the Nogales and Douglas ports of entry.
A lack of enough personnel to process persons and vehicles as well as lane closures have long been an issue. Commercial vehicles transporting goods from Mexico to the western US have seen their time in line going through security checkpoints dramatically increase since the Trump administration came into office. Customs and Border Protection is not allocating resources to moving traffic through the ports of entry in Arizona. In part, this is a reaction to immigrants attempting to rush the border through traffic lanes in frustration for the weeks long wait in Mexico for asylum seekers. But it is also the strategy and policy of the Trump administration to make it as difficult as possible to be granted asylum or for even legal immigration across the southern border.
What the federal government does or does not do to solve the immigration crisis, and yes it is a crisis, can not be ignored in southeastern Arizona. A large part of economy is dependent on cross-border commerce. Governor Ducey and our state delegation has remained rather quiet on this issue, supporting the slow-down. I think our elected officials should question the motives of the Trump administration and push for more lanes open at peak hours to facilitate the faster movement of commercial and personal transport.
I support expansion of our Arizona ports of entry to increase cross-border commerce that will grow the economies of southeastern Arizona counties.