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Napolitano: Border With Mexico to Stay Open for Now

By Spencer S. Hsu
Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano rejected calls to close the U.S.-Mexico border in response to the swine flu outbreak, saying the costs to both countries at this point outweigh the medical benefits.

"That's something that always can be considered," Napolitano told NBC's "Today" show Tuesday, before adding that the virus has already spread to several states across the United States.

"You have to look at what the costs of that are. We literally have thousands of trucks and lots of commerce that cross that border. We have food products and other things that have to go across that border. So that would be a very, very heavy cost for -- as the epidemiologists tell us -- [what] would be marginal, if any, utility in terms of actually preventing the spread of the virus," Napolitano said.

Napolitano made similar comments in a half-dozen televised appearances, appearing to seek to tamp down potential controversy.

On Friday, Rep. Eric J.J. Massa (D), a freshman lawmaker from upstate New York, called for a complete closure of the border. He was joined Monday by Americans for Legal Immigration PAC, a group that advocates for reduced immigration, which urged Congress to halt all but "non-essential traffic" at the border and the deployment of the U.S. military to stop illegal immigration.

Massa changed his tune slightly Tuesday morning. "The good news is, it looks like this kind of swine flu is treatable if you can get to the doctors within three to four days," he told MSNBC, adding that his point was that the U.S. government needed to control its borders. "To the extent that my request has brought attention to this in the United States, I think I've served the people of my district," he said.

By Web Politics Editor  |  April 28, 2009; 2:30 PM ET
Categories:  Foggy Bottom  
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Comments

No disease left behind!!!

Here is where more are going to be the victims of political correctness. With the swine flu spreading like a case of clap at a democratic convention we get lip service from Napolitano on they are are doing everything necessary to prevent the spread of the disease while the first US death is tracked back to mexican nationals bringing their spawn to die in a US hospital at the expense of the citizens of this Nation. Why not put your money where your mouth is and take the first brats to the border to mingle with the benefit stealing burdens on this nation and see what happens if they get the sniffles?

Posted by: eatpork | April 29, 2009 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Costs to THIS Country?

Living in the Rio Grande Valley of Texas, with Matomoros and Reynosa;

Both of which have Populations of over 1 Million, being right across the Arroyo Rio Grande, while the US's Valley only has a Population of 1 Million Total,

I have to wonder if anyone EVER checked to see if certain regions had WHOLESALE improprieties regarding the Numbers of "Work Visas" granted compared to the Populace?!

I would LOVE to know, just HOW MANY American Jobs here, have been "Sold Out" to WAGE DESTROYING Foreign Nationals crossing the Border Daily doing it?!

Never mind, the FACT they also dump their Dual National Spawn on our Welfare/Medical/ and Schooling Systems!

Costs?

Gimme a BREAK!

No;

REALLY B!#@$!!!,

GIVE US A BREAK!

Posted by: SAINT---The | April 28, 2009 8:45 PM | Report abuse

So just how many Americans must die before the border will be closed? By the time we figure that question out , it will be to late to make a difference.
What idiots we elect to run this country, they can't even uphold the laws on the books.

Posted by: jhnjdy | April 28, 2009 8:23 PM | Report abuse

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