Martinez of New Mexico only governor from border states to attend conference in Mexico
Gov. Susana Martinez is the only U.S. governor in attendance at this year’s Border Governors Conference in Ensenada, Baja California, Mexico, which brings together representatives from the governments of the states along the U.S.-Mexican border.
Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R), who was set to host the conference last year but canceled it after the Mexican governors announced they would boycott the state due to the immigration enforcement law S.B. 1070, had originally said she would attend the conference this year but backed out at the last minute. The Christian Science Monitor reports Brewer’s absence means a potential confrontation between the governors over S.B. 1070 has been avoided:
[Brewer] was to partake in discussions over two days that center on economic development, border security, and international ports of entry.
Although SB 1070 was not on the conference agenda, the participating governors from Mexico still “personally reject it,” as do many Mexican citizens, says Martin Cota, a spokesman for Baja California Governor José Guadalupe Osuna Millán.
Gun trafficking will also be on the agenda, according to the Monitor, a salient issue in the wake of Operation Fast and Furious, a gun-surveillance sting run by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives that allowed hundreds of guns to fall into the hands of Mexican drug cartel members.
The office of California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) said he was unable to attend due to legislative concerns, and Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) is attending multiple fundraisers for his presidential campaign in anticipation of tomorrow’s deadline for the candidates’ to file campaign finance reports. Perry was the only absent governor not to send representatives to the conference.
“Conversations about border issues between Texas and other states and the federal government are ongoing,” Perry spokeswoman Lucy Nashed told AP. ”Whether or not someone is attending border governors’ conferences.”
Martinez will host next year’s conference in Albuquerque.