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Legislation allows governor to send 5,000 troops to Texas border


(The Center Square) – Sending 3,000 to 5,000 National Guard troops to the Texas border for up to a year is in legislation being considered by the Tennessee Legislature.

The bill, which would authorize Gov. Bill Lee, includes a fiscal note saying the potential cost is more than $1.4 million.

The amended House Bill 2190 is scheduled to be heard in the House State Government Committee on Wednesday.

“One of the missions of the Tennessee National Guard is disasters and to help other states,” said Rep. Monty Fritts, R-Kingston, the sponsor of the proposal. “We’ve been doing that.”

Fritts said that he is a former National Guard member in Tennessee and Texas.

The bill notes that U.S. Customs and Border Patrol had 6.2 million encounters with people living in or entering the country illegally last fiscal year and an additional 1.7 million entered the U.S. after evading the U.S. Customs and Border Patrol.

It also notes that 169 individuals on the Terrorist Watchlist were stopped trying to cross the border and there has been a 40% increase in encounters with people living in or entering the country illegally since President Joe Biden entered office.

Fritts noted that 7th Congressional Rep. Mark Green, R-Tenn., chaired the House Committee on Homeland Security that released a report with those numbers titled “DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas’ Derelction of Duty” that led to Mayorkas becoming the first U.S. cabinet member since 1876 to be impeached.

The House State Government Committee will also hear House Joint Resolution 810 on Wednesday, a proclamation encouraging Lee to send National Guard troops to the border to assist Texas.