As politicians call for increased border security, the joint U.S.-Mexican government effort to stem the flow of guns into Mexico has been delayed significantly
As politicians call for increased border security, the joint U.S.-Mexican government effort to stem the flow of guns into Mexico has been delayed significantly by technological problems and a lack of training, The Washington Post reports today:
In the past four years, Mexico has submitted information about more than 74,000 guns seized south of the border that the government suspects were smuggled from the United States. But much of the data is so incomplete as to be useless and has not helped authorities bust the gunrunners who supply the Mexican mafias with their vast armories, officials said.
According to U.S. agents working here, Mexican prosecutors have not made a single major arms trafficking case. [...]
As a pillar of a $1.4 billion aid program to Mexico to fight the surging violence and corrupting power of the drug cartels, the U.S. government announced three years ago that it would provide Mexico with its proprietary eTrace Internet-based system. On Tuesday in Mexico City, U.S. and Mexican officials signed a memorandum of understanding allowing for its full implementation. [...]
But translating the program into Spanish took two years. And since its delivery almost a year ago, only a dozen Mexican agents have been trained to use it.
Efforts to stop money trafficking into Mexico are also reportedly less successful than the government had hoped. National security experts argue the best method to catch drug cartel leaders is to cut off their resources — money and guns — to force them into riskier, more visible ventures.
Drug cartel violence is responsible for more than 28,000 deaths in Mexico since President Felipe Calderón took office three years ago, including brutal mass-killings near the border. It is very difficult to purchase firearms in Mexico, and the Mexican government claims 90 percent of weapons it confiscates come from the U.S., the Post reports. (U.S. law enforcement agents — and gun lobbyists — claim the percentage is actually lower.)
So far, little of the violence in Mexico has spread to the U.S., experts say. But Republican politicians continue to push for tighter border security, claiming spillover violence is a serious threat to safety in southern border states.
Rep. Paul Ryan to deliver SOTU response
Chairman of the House Budget Committee Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) will deliver the Republican response to the State of the Union Tuesday, according to Mike Allen
Rep. Paulsen allies with medical device industry to relax FDA oversight
Source: Flickr; Republicanconference (www.flickr.com/photos/republicanconference) On the heels of the Minnesota Independent story last week about U.S. Rep. Erik Paulsen’s cozy financial relationship with the medical device industry, the New York Times reported Tuesday that some health professionals are alarmed by Paulsen’s push to relax Food and Drug Administration (FDA) oversight
Rep. Paulsen touts balanced budget constitutional amendment
In a post for the conservative blog True North , U.S. Rep
Rep. Patrick McHenry: Please, Conservatives, Fill Out Your Census Forms!
The conservative congressman from North Carolina, a constant critic of the census -- one of the people who sounded the alarm about politicization when the
Rep. Paulsen, Karl Rove the latest to get ‘glittered’
Rep. Erik Paulsen and former Bush staffer Karl Rove were both showered with glitter at the Midwest Leadership Conference Friday
Rep. Perlmutter to hold constituent meet-up in grocery store
Colorado Congressman Ed Perlmutter will hold a Government in the Grocery constituent meet-up this evening from 5-7 at the Safeway at 38th and Wadsworth in Wheat Ridge. The address is 3900 Wadsworth. The meeting, where Perlmutter typically sits at a folding table and talks to whomever shows up, is free and open to the public
Rep. Perlmutter criticizes House measure that would eliminate 800K federal jobs
Congressman Ed Perlmutter today issued a scathing statement criticizing the House of Representatives for passing a spending bill that could put nearly a million federal employees out of work. The Colorado delegation voted strictly on party lines, with all four Republicans voting in favor of the bill and the three Democrats voting in opposition. Perlmutter’s statement: “My number one priority is to get people back to work because that’s the best thing we can do to pay our debt and move forward toward economic stability
Rep. Pete Stark Won’t Dignify Constituent by, er, Micturating Upon His Leg
In the tradition of Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), California Democratic Rep. Pete Stark revealed at a recent town hall gathering that there are limits to what
Rep. Peace, ACLU seek investigation of soldier’s allegations of racial discrimination in Afghanistan
Both Rep. Steve Pearce (R-NM) and the American Civil Liberties Union agree: There needs to be an investigation into Spc.
School of Hock
A growing number of college grads are defaulting on their student loans as the economy worsens.