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News Update: Obama to send 1,200 troops to US-Mexico border

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By The Staff

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama will send 1,200 National Guard troops to boost security along the U.S.-Mexico border, officials said Tuesday, pre-empting Republican plans to try to force votes on such a deployment.

Obama will also request $500 million for border protection and law enforcement activities, according to lawmakers and administration officials. The moves come as chances for action on comprehensive immigration reform, Obama's long-stated goal, look increasingly small in this election year. But Obama is under pressure to do something with the issue front and center after Arizona's passage of a tough crackdown law.

The National Guard troops will work on intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance support, analysis and training, and support efforts to block drug trafficking. They will temporarily supplement border patrol agents until Customs and Border Protection can recruit and train additional officers and agents to serve on the border, an administration official said.

The official, speaking on condition of anonymity ahead of a public announcement, disclosed the plans shortly after Obama met at the Capitol with Republican senators who pressed him on immigration issues including the question of sending National Guard troops to the border.


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