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News Release Template Image

President Participates in Conversation on Medicare
Pueblo El Mirage RV Resort and Country Club
El Mirage, Arizona

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
August 29, 2005

[ ... ]

I also want to talk about immigration here in this state. I understand the issue well. I was the governor of a border state; I was the governor of the state of Texas. I know what it means to have a long border with Mexico. And I understand the solemn obligation of the state government and the federal government to enforce our border. I did so when I was governor, and I'll work with your governor and governors along the border to do so as the President of the United States. We have an obligation to enforce the borders. (Applause.)

I understand it's putting a strain on your resources. We know that. I don't know if you know this or not, but hundreds of thousands of people have been detained, trying to illegally cross into Arizona. In other words, what I'm telling you is, there's a lot of people working hard to get the job done, but there is more we can do.

I spoke to Mike Chertoff today -- he's the head of the Department of Homeland Security. I knew people would want me to discuss this issue, so we got us an airplane on -- a telephone on Air Force One, so I called him. I said, are you working with the governor? He said, you bet we are. That's the most effective way to do things, is to work with the state and local authorities. There are more resources that will be available, we'll have more folks on the border; there will be more detention space to make sure that those who are stopped trying to illegally enter our country are able to be detained.

It's important for the people of this state to understand your voices are being here in Washington. D.C. And this Senator and this Congressman are working closely with the administration to make sure we got the resources necessary to do our responsibility, which is enforce this border. And we'll do so. And we'll do so. (Applause.)

[ ... ]

[ End ]