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At South Texas field hearing, Gov. Rick Perry criticizes federal inaction, makes call to 'Secure this border, Mr. President'

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Beltway Confidential,Opinion,Immigration,Border Security,Rick Perry,Michael McCaul,Sheila Jackson Lee,Spencer Brown

Texas Gov. Rick Perry on Thursday told a House panel that Texas has been doing the job of the federal government for nearly a decade, securing the international border without adequate support from President Obama.

The field hearing at South Texas College was called by House Homeland Security Committee Chairman Michael McCaul, R-Texas, to "examine the impact of and response to this massive flow of unaccompanied children."

Perry called the surge of more than 50,000 underage immigrants in the past several months "an opportunity for Americans to deal with an issue that the world is watching." Perry also urged a quick return of any apprehended immigrants, saying that those who enter the country illegally must be sent back to demonstrate that coming here is not worth the treacherous journey.

He called for more Texas National Guard units devoted to border security operations, and also requested that if any federal agents release any undocumented immigrants into Texan communities, the immigrants be screened for contagious illnesses.

Perry also wants Texas and its taxpayers to be reimbursed for the hundreds of millions of dollars the state has spent doing the federal government's work in securing the border, saying to Obama: "secure this border, Mr. President ... address this issue and secure this border.

"We know how to do this ... because we've done it before," he added.

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Spencer Brown

Special to the Examiner
The Washington Examiner