WESLACO, Texas — Texas Gov. Rick Perry visited the Rio Grande Valley and called on Washington to do more to protect the border and help Texas cope with “a major pending disaster.”
Perry made the comments at the Texas DPS Regional Headquarters after touring an overcrowded detention center filled with Central American children.
In May alone 9000 children crossed the border according to the Department of Homeland Security.
“This isn’t a Democrat problem. This isn’t a Republican problem. This is an American problem,” said Perry.
Perry said the Border Patrol has been “overrun” by tens of thousands of children arriving from Central America and demanded the federal government do more to secure the Texas border.
In a letter to President Barack Obama he asked for 1000 National Guard troops and predator drones.
The governor authorized DPS to spend $1.3 million a week to add additional patrols and increase security in the Rio Grande Valley.
He and Texas DPS Director Steve McCraw said cartels are playing a role in the crisis by taking advantage of an overwhelmed Border Patrol to move more drugs across the border and profiting from smuggling children into the U.S.
“The cartels are very much involved with putting these young individual at risk to further their interests,” said Perry.
During his visit he toured one of the crowded detention centers in the Rio Grande Valley where kids of all ages are being held.
“There are babies, babies in there who are being transported across Mexico,” said Perry.
The governor warned triple digit temperatures and deadly heat would pose a threat to those who try to cross the border this summer and create a bigger humanitarian crisis.
“You’re going to see a trail of tears again from Central America to Texas. There will be numbers of people dying in route,” said Perry.