Rangers from national parks around the country are being sent to the U.S.-Mexico border to fight illegal immigration, as House Democrats refuse to finance President Donald Trump's border security plan, according to news reports Monday.
The Trump administration ordered last week that rangers sent to the border in Arizona and Texas, USA Today reports, and National Park Service officials say they could be sending them on two-week details through September of next year.
President Trump signed a stopgap budget measure Thursday approved by the Senate to keep the federal government operating through Dec. 20.
He is seeking $18.2 billion for U.S. Customs and Border Protection for the next fiscal year, up from $15 billion last year, which includes $5 billion for his border wall.
But House Democrats won't fund the wall — and the stalemate caused a five-week shutdown earlier this year.
Robert Bushell, assistant chief patrol agent for the Border Patrol's Tucson Sector in Arizona, said park rangers helped arrest 1,195 migrants for illegal border crossings and other crimes last year.
Rangers also seized 720 pounds of marijuana and 120 pounds of methamphetamine, he told USA Today.
"It is an awesome partnership and these guys are really sharp," Bushnell said. "That's a big reason why we continue to ask for their support."
USA Today reported that rangers from the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina; Wrangell-St. Elias National Park in Alaska; the National Mall in Washington, D.C.; and Zion National Park in Utah will be going to the border.
The Great Smoky Mountains, for instance, sent one ranger to the border, though it was asked to send two, park spokeswoman Dana Soehn said.
The nation's busiest national park, the mountains had 11.4 million visitors last year, covering about a half-million acres patrolled by 35 rangers.
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