There are reports that the Trump administration is considering using 100,000 National Guard troops to detain illegal immigrants, Huffington Post reports.
A draft of potential means to execute a previous Trump executive order was released by the AP on Friday. The memo says it was written by U.S. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly, but the White House and DHS denied it was real.
“100% false. There is no effort to use the National Guard to round up,” White House press secretary Sean Spicer said in an email to The Huffington Post.
“The Department is not considering mobilizing the National Guard,” a DHS spokesperson said in a statement.
The 11-page draft called for militarized deportation in 11 states: Arizona, California, New Mexico and Texas, and non-border states like Arkansas, Colorado, Louisiana, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon and Utah. Governors of those states would have final say over whether their National Guard troops be used.
The National Guard would be authorized, “to perform the functions of an immigration officer in relation to the investigation, apprehension and detention of aliens in the United States,” according to the memo.
Two governors responded:
“I would have concerns about the utilization of National Guard resources for immigration enforcement with the current deployment responsibilities our guardsmen have overseas,” Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchison (R) said. “During my time at Homeland Security, we utilized National Guard partnerships for specific responsibilities along the border, so the concept is fine, but it’s a matter of resources. In Arkansas, I believe it would be too much of a strain on our National Guard personnel.”
Hutchinson was undersecretary for border and transportation security when the DHS was created by George W. Bush.
“While we cannot speculate as to what may be requested via official channels in the future, we have serious constitutional concerns about activating the National Guard to provide the mentioned services and the potential financial impacts of doing so,” the office of Utah Gov. Gary Herbert (R) said.
Trump has publicly called for tripling Immigration and Customs Enforcement deportation agents.
The president can call on National Guard troops to handle, “unlawful obstructions, combinations, assemblages, or rebellion against the authority of the U.S. make it impractical to enforce the laws of the U.S. in any state or territory by the ordinary course of judicial proceedings.”