Maryland, Virginia Governors Recall National Guard from U.S. Border

From left to right: Maryland governor Larry Hogan (R) and Virginia governor Ralph Northam (D).
Mark Wilson, Win McNamee / Getty

Maryland and Virginia are recalling National Guard members sent to the southern border in protest of the Trump administration’s immigration policies.

Republican Governor Larry Hogan announced on Tuesday that Maryland would cancel the deployment of four National Gaurd members to the border, while Democrat Governor Ralph Northam said four soldiers and a helicopter will return to Virginia.

“Immigration enforcement efforts should focus on criminals, not separating innocent children from their families,” Hogan tweeted. “Until this policy of separating children from their families has been rescinded, Maryland will not deploy any National Guard resources to the border.”

“Earlier this morning, I ordered our 4 crewmembers & helicopter to immediately return from where they were stationed in New Mexico,” he added.

Northam said in a statement on Tuesday that National Guard members will pause their efforts along the border until children are no longer separated from their parents, underlining his “responsibility to stand up to policies or actions that run afoul of the values that define us as Americans.”

“Virginia benefits from the important work of securing our border and we have a responsibility to contribute to that mission,” Northam said in a statement. “Today I spoke with the Adjutant General of the Virginia National Guard and ordered him to withdraw four soldiers and one helicopter from Arizona until the federal government ends its enforcement of a zero-tolerance policy that separates children from their parents.”

New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said Monday his state will not deploy National Guard members to the border.

“The administration’s unconscionable treatment of families at our border is a moral outrage and an affront to the values that built this state and this nation,” Cuomo said in a statement.

“New York will not be party to this inhumane treatment of immigrant families,” he continued. “We will not deploy National Guard to the border, and we will not be complicit in a political agenda that governs by fear and division.”

The announcements follow Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper signing an executive order aimed at limiting state resources used to separate immigrant families.

“The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s policy and practice of separating children from their parents when arriving at the southern border is offensive to our core values as Coloradans and as a country,” the directive said.

“The administration announced a ‘zero tolerance’ policy in the spring of 2018 resulting in family separations. The administration has recently stated that the purpose of the policy is to intimidate immigrants and deter crossings.”

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