| Border |

Jan Brewer Not a Fan of Immigration Bill Unless Border Is Secure; Can't Define "Secure Border"

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There's no surprise here: Governor Jan Brewer doesn't support the so-called "Gang of Eight" immigration proposal, and her predictable reasoning is that the "border is not secure."

Brewer's explanation seems fairly meaningless, though, as her spokesman Matt Benson tells New Times there's "not a specific definition" for "secure border."

See also:
-"Gang of Eight" Immigration Deal Outline Released
-Arizona Congressmen Take the Jan Brewer Route on Immigration Proposals

However, Benson tells us that the federal government -- where officials swear up and down that the border is secure -- doesn't have a definition either.

He pointed to the "old standard" of a secure border, which is "operational control," defined in a 2006 bill signed in to law by President George W. Bush as "the prevention of all unlawful entries into the United States, including entries by terrorists, other unlawful aliens, instruments of terrorism, narcotics, and other contraband."

Since that ain't gonna happen, Homeland Security has made its own definition(s) of controlling the border, and is supposed to redefine it again with something called a "border condition index," which still isn't a definition, really.

Still, it seems like Brewer uses cries of "secure the border" as a cop-out, just using it to explain opposition to immigration reform -- especially since she continues to insist that ranchers on the border would know best if the border with Mexico is "secure."

Benson tells us that's not the case.

"We know what a secure border looks like," he says, adding that the Yuma sector of the border is an example of that. Several politicians have used Yuma as the prime example of border security, which does have the Border Patrol's seal of "operational security."

The "Gang of Eight" bill calls for a ton of border security improvements, but apparently border security is more of a prerequisite to earn Brewer's support. Or, maybe it's a cop-out.

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Follow Matthew Hendley on Twitter at @MatthewHendley.

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