The Biden administration has been quietly pressuring officials in Arizona to tear down their temporary wall along the Mexican border with the assurance that the federal government will erect a new wall some time in 2023. However, Republican Gov. Doug Ducey reportedly said he will not even consider removing the wall.
Ducey’s communications director, C.J. Karamargin stated, “The suggestion by any federal bureaucracy, that we take action to make the border easier to cross, is completely unacceptable. Gov. Ducey takes the responsibility to protect Arizona very seriously — that’s why we put up these containers. He added, “What they’re suggesting, that we take them down and make Arizona less safe, is a nonstarter.” Karamargin explained, “They want us to take down shipping containers and leave gaps open for who knows how long so they can put up what sounds like a chain link fence. They’re asking to take down something so they can do something that we’ve already done. What Arizona needs is a permanent solution.”
The Washington Examiner reports that the blatant rejection by Arizona is the most recent move in a chess match between state and federal officials over border security. When Joe Biden became president in January 2021, he immediately halted construction on the border wall. Since then, the number of illegal immigration arrests has skyrocketed, notably in Yuma, Arizona, which is on the border with Mexico. Nationwide, more than 3.6 million migrants have been arrested for illegal entry since Biden took office, more than the eight years that former President Barack Obama was in office.
The Ducey administration waited for the federal government to fill gaps between wall construction, but by the middle of 2022, Arizona had taken steps to close the openings where almost all illegal immigrants were entering the area and turning themselves into border patrol. In August, construction workers stacked shipping containers in the wall’s openings to prevent Mexican cartels from sneaking people and narcotics into the country.