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Gary P.
Republican AL 6

About Rep. Gary
  • A Call to Action—Border Security

    by Representative Gary J. Palmer

    Posted on 2015-02-04

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    PALMER. I would. I want to thank the gentlewoman from Arizona for the work you have done on this. I know this has been--I don't want to say a labor of love, but you have an incredible sense of urgency, I think perhaps more than anyone that I have been involved with, a sense of how important this is.

    I want to talk a little bit about the fence. Like the gentleman from Georgia, I have been to the border before but not in the context of examining our border security. I am a strong proponent of the fence. I have been all along.

    What this trip opened my eyes to is the fact that the fence by itself is not enough. It is an impediment. One of the things that was impressed upon me on this trip was the sophistication of the cartels and the people across the border in breaching our fence and breaching our security.

    {time} 1700 There is some pretty serious engineering going on here. When we were in San Diego, for instance, we saw where we have double-layer fencing. We have got the metal mat, landing mat fence on the Mexico side. We have got the high, the heavy gauge fence with the razor wire at the top on the U.S. side.

    They are using hardened blades for laser saws. It literally takes 1 minute to cut through there. All along that fence you saw where it was patched and what the border patrol calls doggy doors. They cut it out in three places, push it open, and they are through.

    The interesting thing is there, you have got 3 million people in Tijuana on the Mexico side, and you have got 3 million in San Diego. Almost the minute they are through, they are assimilated.

    But the thing that is going on there is the cooperation between local law enforcement, the Coast Guard, the Border Patrol, and how diligent they are to be there immediately once that line is breached to interdict that.

    They have been so effective at it that they are now pushing these folks offshore. They are using the panga boats now, and the Coast Guard, working with the Border Patrol and local law enforcement, have been so good at interdicting that they are forcing them up the coast of California. That is not the case in Arizona.

    What people need to understand is that just building the fence and pulling back and thinking that is going to stop them--I don't care how high we build it, how wide we build it, how many layers we have; if we don't have people in forward operating positions to interdict these people when they are staging [[Page H794]] to come across, we are not going to stop them.

    The picture that you are showing there next to you is the fence in Arizona, and the attention was drawn to where they had cut through the mesh there. That is not the thing that got my attention.

    If you will notice there, those are 6-inch I-beams supported by 6- inch channel. That is quarter-inch carbon steel. That is all along that border.

    They came along there, with these hardened blades, laser saws, cut through the I-beam, cut through the channel, folded it over, ramped over, and drove trucks over it.

    Now, this was not reported in the national media. I am not sure that there was any discussion about it from this administration. It was the local media that picked up on it. The ranchers know about this.

    But I think--and you can correct me if I am wrong--but I think they said there have been 47 vehicles that crossed over that. These are pickup trucks loaded with drugs and other items, contraband, whether it is guns or drugs or human trafficking. But that is the issue.

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