California Governor Gavin Newsom is reportedly planning the abrupt withdrawal of his state's National Guard troops from the U.S. border this week; calling the President's policy towards national security a "manufactured crisis".
Under a "general order" that Mr. Newsom plans to sign on Monday, 110 California National Guard troops will be redirected to support the state's central fire agency, Cal Fire, and another 100 will work on statewide "intelligence operations" aimed at global criminal drug gangs.
Under the plan expected to be announced by Newsom, about 100 of the 360 troops that California deployed will remain at the border, tasked with focusing on transnational crime such as drug and gun trafficking - and not immigration enforcement.
The drawdown of California's troops will begin immediately but may not be completed until March 31, when the state's current agreement with the federal government is set to end.
"This is our answer to the White House: No more division, xenophobia or nativism", Newsom plans to say, according to prepared remarks.
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The decision follows similar action last month by New Mexico Governor Michelle Lujan Grusham, who ordered the withdrawal of the majority of National Guard troops at the border. Newsom's order cites the move as more reason to reprioritize the state's National Guard deployment away from operations traditionally performed by the Department of Homeland Security.
Newsom has sharply contrasted the differences between state and federal immigration policy, describing California in his inaugural address as a place that "provides shelter to all who need it and sanctuary to all who seek it - where opportunity abounds for all who will work for it". What Trump seems to have forgotten, however, is that individual states along the border have the right to pull troops if they so desire. "Which is why I have given the National Guard a new mission". The troops were deployed by her Republican predecessor, Susana Martinez, previous year at Trump's request. During the gubernatorial campaign, Newsom said he disagreed with Brown's decision.
"It will not be a mission to round up women and children or detain people escaping violence and seeking a better life".
Aside from state National Guards, the president has ordered thousands of active-duty troops to the border. And on his first full day in office last month, Newsom said he had directed California National Guard Adjutant General David Baldwin to prepare "a menu of options". "And the California National Guard will not be enforcing federal immigration laws".
Trump has until Friday to make a deal with Democrats to fund the government or parts will shut down again.