Fox News misleadingly credited Governor Rick Perry's (R-TX) announcement that National Guard troops would be deployed to the border for reducing the number of immigrants crossing the border -- but experts find that migration regularly decreases in summer months due to dangerous summer weather.
Texas Governor Orders National Guard To Border To Curb Flow Of Migrants To U.S.
FoxNews.com: Rick Perry To Deploy National Guard Troops To Texas-Mexico Border. On July 21, FoxNews.com reported Texas Governor Rick Perry's plan to deploy up to 1,000 National Guardsmen to the border. The article reported that the deployment would cost Texas an estimated $12 million a month, adding that the primary purpose of the Guard would be "referring and deterring immigrants, not detaining people." [FoxNews.com, 7/21/14]
Fox News Falsely Cites Perry's Deployment For The Decrease In Immigration
America's Newsroom: Immigration Has Been Cut By 60% In A 60 Mile Stretch Since Rick Perry Initiated His Border Plan. On the August 6 edition of America's Newsroom, host Bill Hemmer credited Perry's recent border plan, to increase the number of guards on the border, with decreasing border crossings in the Rio Grande area.
HEMMER: Since Rick Perry initiated his border patrol agents going down there, the biggest area where people were coming across, the Rio Grande area, there is 60-mile stretch, it's been cut in half by 60% in just a few days since they started. [Fox News, America's Newsroom, 8/6/14]
Fox Hosts: We See That The National Guard Works, "I'm Glad Rick Perry Is On The Case." On the August 5 edition of Outnumbered, co-hosts Harris Faulkner and Kimberly Guilfoyle praised Perry's plan to use National Guard troops at the border, suggesting President Obama give his own "national, National Guard support" to Perry.
FAULKNER: Why not give the kind of national, National Guard support to this Governor that we see he has been asking for.
GUILFOYLE: Great question, and we see that it works. So adopt the best practices, do something. That type of leadership should come from our Commander in Chief, from the President. I'm glad Rick Perry is on the case. [Fox News, Outnumbered, 8/5/14]
Experts Say Reduced Flow Is Due To Weather And Other Factors Entirely Unrelated To Perry's Stunt
NY Times: Both Honduras And Mexico Have Taken Steps To "Slow The Migrant Flow." In a July 20 article, the New York Times pointed out the many steps taken by foreign governments to stem the flow of illegal immigrants coming to the United States.
Honduras, the source of the largest proportion of recent child migrants, has moved to make it harder for children to leave the country without authorization. It has forbidden the sale to minors of bus tickets to the border and assigned additional police officers, including a specially trained unit, to patrol bus routes and frequent border crossing points."
Mexico has said it will take action to slow the migrant flow, pledging to stop people from stowing away on freight trains, a common tactic to head north, and to increase patrols of its border. [New York Times, 7/20/14]
AP: "Illegal Border Crossings ... Tend To Slow During The Summer." On July 18, three days prior to Governor Perry announcing the deployment of National Guard troops, AP reported a decrease of immigrants crossing the border (emphasis added):
The officials, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to publicly discuss the latest trends in border arrests, said Friday it's too soon to know what has led to drop in border arrests. They said illegal border crossings along the Mexican border tend to slow during the summer. [Associated Press, 7/18/14]
Arizona Republic: Number Of Children Apprehended At Border Has Decreased Since June. The Arizona Republic reported that since June, at least a month before Perry announced the deployment of the National Guard to the border, the number of unaccompanied minors caught crossing the border has "fallen significantly":
The number of unaccompanied children caught each day in south Texas has fallen significantly over the past few weeks from 355 a day in June to 150 a day for the first two weeks of July, according to the White House. Rio Grande Valley Chief Border Patrol Officer Kevin Oaks said apprehensions dropped as low as 80 kids one day last week. [Arizona Republic, 7/23/14]
Mother Jones: The Decrease In Immigration Is "Entirely Predictable." In a July 24 article Mother Jones explained that the decrease in immigrants crossing the border during the summer months is a pattern that has been seen for many years:
But the slowdown in the number of children picked up over the last few weeks also seems entirely predictable: Since 1999, the overall number of undocumented migrants apprehended by the Border Patrol has peaked in the spring before dropping precipitously during the summer months. In Texas' Rio Grande Valley area--the area seeing the most child migrants--July temperatures reach well up into the 90s, and often higher. Here's a month-by-month look at apprehensions in the Rio Grande Valley Border Patrol sector:
[Mother Jones, 7/24/14]