Sending the National Guard to the southern U.S. border would be a "good start" in addressing the crisis brought about by the onslaught of illegal immigrants entering the country, said Rep. Adam Kinzinger.
"I think it's a good start. I mean, this has been done before. It's been done with great success," the Illinois Republican told Fox News' "America's Newsroom" Friday.
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The National Guard could free up the Border Patrol agents who were currently busy attending to the thousands of children who, unaccompanied by parents, have entered the country illegally, Kinzinger said.
"What we see right now is Border Patrol, you know, you hear about them changing diapers and taking caring of these children, when their job and what they've been trained to do is actually to go protect the border.
"The National Guard can alleviate a lot of these extra duties they're doing, and allow the Border Patrol to go out and stop the drug traffickers from putting their drugs across, potential terrorists from coming in, and everything like that," Kinzinger said.
Specifically, he said the National Guard's medical unit could "take care of these children," or they could help "with surveillance issues."
Kinzinger explained using the National Guard would be a "short-term stop-gap" solution to a "problem that (President Barack Obama has) created." He stressed their role would only be as a support to the Border Patrol.
"We are not talking about troops walking along the border armed. We are talking about people who can do the duties to allow the Border Patrol, which are well trained, to do what they need to do," he said.
While Kinzinger admitted immigration reform "needs to happen," he said it shouldn't take place "until the border is secure."
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