Thursday, April 5, 2018

He Can’t Send In The Marines

Trump promised to send in the military to guard the U.S. border.

Speaking at a lunch with Baltic leaders, Trump said he’s been discussing the idea with his Defense Secretary, Jim Mattis.

“We’re going to be doing things militarily. Until we can have a wall and proper security, we’re going to be guarding our border with the military,” he said, calling the measure a “big step.”

Sounds tough, but basically he can’t.  Well, he can, but all the military can do is support the Border Patrol.  The Posse Comitatus Act prevents the military from doing anything that resembles police action.  So all this talk about “doing things militarily” is just more Trump wanking.

(By the way, the history of the Act is a study in political bargaining.  In exchange for getting the federal troops out of the South during Reconstruction, the Electoral College delivered the White House to Rutherford B. Hayes over the popular vote winner Samuel Tilden in the election of 1876.)

3 barks and woofs on “He Can’t Send In The Marines

  1. He actually can’t even send in the National Guard. He can submit a request to the states to send in the guard, but the guard is under state control. Trump can’t directly order the National Guard to do anything.

  2. The National Guard consists of people carrying on their lives, working, raising families, and leading what amounts to normal except that they’ve committed to acting to protect their state when called upon. They train on weekends and go for an extended time in the summer months practicing what they’ve been taught to do. Now, should they be called upon to upend their lives, travel to the dessert and stand around waiting for the migrant invasion imagined by our crazy President, I suspect he’ll lose a few votes in Trump country. Add this to the Chinese tariffs on soybeans (Wisconsin et al) and bourbon (Kentucky) with jobs lost I’m feeling more upbeat about the chances of a big blue wave coming in November.

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