California rejects Trump's request for National Guard troops on border

California rejects plan to send National Guard troops to Mexico border, AP reports

Jerry Brown got some rare praise from the president when he pledged to send 400 of the state's National Guard troops to the border mission last week. "The Arizona National Guard will deploy 225 members of the Guard today to support border security measures", the state militia said in a statement.

According to the Associated Press, state officials notified federal authorities that deployed soldiers will be prohibited from tackling duties seen as cracking down on illegal immigration: including fixing border patrol vehicles, operating surveillance cameras, and monitoring radio transmissions.

Vitiello made the comments to reporters in Washington Monday after two USA officials told The Associated Press said terms of the federal government's initial plans for sending National Guard troops to the border because the work is considered too closely tied to immigration.

A Defense Department spokesperson said California has declined to commit more than 200 troops to the effort.

"The governor determined that what we asked for is unsupportable, but we will have other iterations", Ronald Vitiello, U.S. Customs and Border Protection's acting deputy commissioner, told reporters in Washington.

Just how limited became clearer Monday after California's National Guard told Homeland Security officials the state will not allow soldiers to do the types of things they're doing elsewhere on the border: monitoring surveillance cameras, performing maintenance and transporting US border agents.

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"California Governor Jerry Brown is doing the right thing and sending the National Guard to the Border". That's because California guardsmen are to be sent not only to the border but to the Pacific coast and interior locations "throughout the state", Brown said in a letter to Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen.

Brown was clear last week that California troops will help go after drugs, guns and criminal gangs, but not immigrants.

Brown last week characterized his decision to contribute troops as a welcome infusion of federally-funded support to fight transnational criminal gangs and drug and firearms smugglers.

Trump this month said he would send thousands of National Guard troops to the southern border, where they could remain until a border wall is constructed.

Republican governors from Arizona, New Mexico and Texas have openly embraced the Trump administration's plans and specific jobs for their troops, as California did in previous Guard deployments. About 900 Guard troops have deployed so far, a National Guard commander said Monday: 650 in Texas, 250 in Arizona and 60 in New Mexico.

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