Perry had previously asked the Obama administration to provide the same number of federal troops in an ongoing debate over how to deal with the flood of new immigrants.
"The price of inaction is too high for Texas to pay," Perry said at a news conference. During the nine months ending June 30, more than 57,000 children, most of them from Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador, have been detained at the U.S.-Mexico border, twice the number arriving last year count according to U.S. government data. President Obama is scheduled to meet in the next few days with the leaders of those three countries to seek cooperation the flood of children coming to the U.S., Reuters reported.
Perry said the National Guard would help with the state's surveillance and deploy some of its assets, including aircraft, to monitor the border. The news drew a lukewarm response from the White House, where press secretary Josh Earnest neither endorsed nor spoke against the move. "If this deployment does move forward, it is the kind of step that we would like to see be coordinated and integrated with the ongoing response there," Earnest told reporters. The Obama administration has requested $3.7 billion to feed and shelter the children many of whom are expected to be in the country for months or even years before getting a deportation hearing. Republicans in Congress have so far held up action on the request, demanding greater security on the border before the granting of aid.
Perry's action could place pressure on the Obama administration, which has increased the number of border patrol agents, to take further action to deal with the border crisis.
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Photo of Gov. Rick Perry: AP Images