Texas governor asks Obama to send troops, drones to border

Perry, a Republican running for reelection, on Monday delivered a letter to Obama on the tarmac after Air Force One touched down in Austin, where the president is raising money and delivering a speech on education. 

Besides troops, Perry said Obama should also send unmanned aerial drones to secure the border from Mexican drug traffickers. 

The governor’s office released a letter Perry sent to Obama highlighting the requests. 

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“I respectfully but urgently request that the federal government quickly deploy 1,000 troops to the Texas-Mexico border, as well as additional law enforcement tools and technology,” Perry wrote. “We must show the cartels that Washington will no longer tolerate their terrorizing and criminalizing the border region.” 

Perry outlined recent examples of Mexican drug cartel violence occurring on the U.S. side of the border and implored Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano to act quickly. 

“The federal government must step up and finally do what is needed to secure our borders,” Perry wrote. 

Obama’s aides say the president has already taken enormous steps to secure the border. 

“For starters, the president has put more assets on the border to secure the border than has ever previously been done,” White House spokesman Bill Burton told reporters on Air Force One. “That includes National Guard troops, technology, things he has done on enforcement. That's something that he is working very hard on.” 

Perry said in the letter that his invitation for Obama and Napolitano to meet with Perry and his law enforcement team still stands. 

Burton said Monday's schedule did not allow for a longer, more substantive meeting, but that White House staff “has contacted him for meetings and briefings to discuss the matter and it's something that we will continue to work with them on.”