Ex-Border Officials Question Trump’s Plan to Hire 5,000 More Officers
By Steve Neavling
President Trump’s plans to add more than 5,000 border enforcement officers has caught criticism from former top officials at Customs and Border Patrol.
Three top officials at CBP told Reuters that the hiring presents logistical challenges and might be unnecessary.
Increasing employment won’t be easy and may involve relaxing screening protocols for recruits, which could invite corruption and questionable hires, the former officials said.
The officials also questioned the necessity of hiring more agents since apprehensions at the border have declined.
“Congress is going to be looking at this very carefully and looking for justification for this kind of money to make sure they don’t write a check that is not necessary,” said W. Ralph Basham who headed U.S. Customs and Border Protection during the George W. Bush administration. “The question will be do we need more agents or do we need money for technology and infrastructure,” he said.
Trump has called for a more aggressive crackdown on illegal immigration and called for the hiring of more than 5,000 border patrol agents and 10,000 ICE officers.
“At the end of the day, the goal is to get control of the border and enhance the security of the country,” said White House assistant press secretary Michael Short in an email.
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