In advance of the presidential election of 2012, President Barack Obama is preparing to shutter nine Border Patrol stations, many of which are located in critical areas of the southern border. The announcement of the closures has met with resistance from local law enforcement, federal lawmakers, and those agents charged with securing the border with Mexico.
There is legitimate concern that leaving these posts unguarded will give a green light to Mexican drug cartels and human traffickers to ratchet up their illegal activities across the border with the United States. The following nine Border Patrol stations are scheduled for closure:
Texas: Lubbock, Amarillo, Dallas, San Angelo, Abilene, and San Antonio.
Idaho: Twin Falls
Most of the affected stations are in areas that experience extraordinarily high movements of illegal immigration and narcotics. For example, the CBP (Customs and Border Protection) outpost in Amarillo, Texas, sits smack in the center of the I-40 corridor.
"I-40 is a corridor for not only narcotics, but also for the human trafficking and we do use the Border Patrol quite a bit to come out and help us with those," Potter County, Texas, Sheriff Brian Thomas told a local television station. "They're the ones that have the authority to arrest them and detain them. We don't."
"It could impact us tremendously since we've only got two agents up here now for 26 counties," Thomas told FoxNews.com.
Potter County, in the Texas Panhandle, lies in the area normally covered by the Amarillo CBP station.
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