Bill would hike border security enforcement

Rep. Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) has introduced legislation that would enhance border security to curb the flow of immigrants crossing the U.S. border with Mexico.

The measure would direct the Department of Homeland Security to finish building a fence along the border, as well as install additional lighting, cameras, physical barriers and other biometric sensors to prevent anyone from entering the U.S. over the Southwest border illegally.

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"Much like in a surgical procedure, the first step undeniably must be to stop the bleeding," Franks said in a statement.

The Arizona Republican said tightening border security would prevent dangerous immigrants from entering the country.

"Border security and national security are inextricably linked. A porous border is an open invitation to those who wish to harm America, and for too long our borders have been an inviting access point for drug smugglers, human traffickers, and potential terrorists," Franks said.

Franks's bill would also call for adding 6,000 new border patrol agents. The agents would further give border patrol agents access to national parks and wildlife refuges that line the Southwest border.

Republicans have long said that border security should be addressed before Congress considers a comprehensive immigration bill. 

Several conservative Republican lawmakers have signed onto Franks's bill, including Reps. Steve Stockman (Texas), Michele Bachmann (Minn.), Ted Yoho (Fla.), Paul Gosar (Ariz.), David Schweikert (Ariz.), Tom McClintock (Calif.) and Ted Poe (Texas).

The introduction of Franks's legislation comes a year to the day the Senate passed its immigration overhaul.