Gov. DeSantis announces southern border trip

DeSantis 2
Roughly 50 Florida law enforcement officers are currently serving in the region.

Gov. Ron DeSantis will receive a security briefing at the southern border on Saturday alongside Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, the Governor’s Office announced Friday.

The briefing comes after DeSantis deployed 50 Florida law enforcement officers to the region in late June to address a rise in crime at the border.

DeSantis will be joined by a platoon of state officials including Attorney General Ashley Moody, Senate President Wilton Simpson, FDLE Commissioner Rick Swearingen and Florida Highway Patrol Col. Gene Spaulding.

In announcing the deployment, DeSantis charged that Florida’s rising crime rate isn’t “organic” but rather caused by criminal immigrants.

What’s more, he laid blame at the feet of President Joe Biden’s immigration policies.

Among other points, DeSantis noted a rise in human trafficking stemming from south of the border. Additionally, he noted, rural sheriffs in North Florida have raised the alarm on methamphetamine crossing the border.

Nikki Fried, Florida’s Agriculture Commissioner and a Democratic candidate for Governor, criticized DeSantis shortly after the visit was announced.

“Ron DeSantis acts more like the Governor of Fox News than the Governor of Florida,” Fried tweeted.

Fried’s reaction mirrors the response of Democrats at-large when DeSantis announced plans to mobilize police to the region.

In a letter to DeSantis, 16 Democrats including Democratic Leader Lauren Book decried the deployment as politically motivated. They also argued the move endangered Floridians, who now are protected by fewer officers.

“Your choice to divert Florida officers away from their local communities where they are desperately needed will handicap efforts to combat this critical and urgent public safety issue,” the Democrats’ letter states. “Additionally, summer tourist season is upon us; with a reopened economy, surging numbers in communities coast-to-coast will demand a greater police presence to safeguard and protect Floridians and visitors alike,” the letter adds.

The Saturday trip will make good on DeSantis’ plan to visit the officers. According to the Governor’s Office, the briefing will kick off at 3:15 p.m. in Del Rio, Texas.

“Hopefully I’ll be able to get out there at some point and wish them well when they’re on the ground,” DeSantis said at the send-off event.

Jason Delgado

Jason Delgado covers news out of the Florida State Capitol. After a go with the U.S. Army, the Orlando-native attended the University of Central Florida and earned a degree in American Policy and National Security. His past bylines include WMFE-NPR and POLITICO Florida. He'd love to hear from you. You can reach Jason by email ([email protected]) or on Twitter at @byJasonDelgado.


  • Tony Peppers

    July 16, 2021 at 3:50 pm

    Where are all my “southern border photo op” people at now??

  • Tim

    July 16, 2021 at 9:38 pm

    We have a true leader

  • Tom

    July 17, 2021 at 8:11 am

    What a great Governor.
    Compliments for encouraging more Covid vaccines being administered, over 2.5 million offered in a New turn key program by CRB health care and the Depart of Health. Compliments, America’s Governor demonstrates his leadership on this program and going to the border. I’m glad to witness his leadership in better understanding the border invasion that is behind allowed. Gov. DeSantis proves everyday the ability to do more than one thing at a time. His ability to pivot from one challenge to another and daily crisis is a credit to his whiz kid approach. Compliments!

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