The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

The independent newspaper of the University of Iowa community since 1868

The Daily Iowan

Opinion | Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds prioritizes Texas, not Iowa

Reynolds is dispatching multiple Iowa state officers to the southern border to assist Texas’s efforts in dealing with illegal immigration because she believes President Biden isn’t doing anything to tackle it. Both of which, are massively incorrect.
Emily Nyberg
Gov. Kim Reynolds speaks during the 4th District tailgate Presidential Rally in Nevada, Iowa on Saturday, Sept. 9, 2023. The tailgate featured speeches from Republican Presidential candidates and U.S. Representatives among others.

Reynolds announced March 28 she would dispatch over 100 Iowa National Guardsmen to the U.S.-Mexico border to continue addressing the border crisis. The effort supports Texas’ Operation Lone Star, a joint operation between the Texas Public Safety Department and the U.S. military to counter mass illegal immigration.

Reynolds sent multiple officers to the border in 2021, making this new deployment the fourth time she sent troops out of state in support of this operation. To take things further, Reynolds signed a new law on April 10 to make illegal immigration a state crime.

Iowa law enforcement officers now have the power to arrest and charge people with an aggravated misdemeanor if they were denied proper admission into the United States and deported or removed from the country in any way.

Reynolds has publicly stated her intent behind this bill, citing how Biden has “refused” to deport undocumented immigrants.

The Biden Administration has failed to enforce our nation’s immigration laws, putting the protection and safety of Iowans at risk,” said.

Reynolds is very misleading and flat-out incorrect on several of these issues. She obviously has not done her homework with so many logical errors in both her reasoning and continual actions.

President Joe Biden has deported many immigrants, in fact, even more than former President Donald Trump. Furthermore, the southern border should not be a pressing issue for Iowa, considering the 927-mile distance.

According to an article in the Washington Post, the Biden Administration has deported more than 142,000 immigrants in 2023. This is double the number from 2022, and 127,600 more than Trump’s deported immigrants in 2020. Although more immigrants have been crossing into America during Biden’s presidency than during Trump’s, it’s still clear Biden is putting in efforts to counter.

If anything, Biden is following in former President Barack Obama’s footsteps, who deported 3.2 million undocumented immigrants during his first term and 2.1 million during his second. Obama was even nicknamed the “Deporter-in-Chief” by immigration activists.

Both Obama and Biden have deported more immigrants than Donald Trump, meaning Biden is in fact cracking down on illegal immigration. Reynolds is incorrect in the assertion that Biden isn’t doing anything; he’s doing more than people give him credit for.

Regarding Reynold’s actions, the last thing Iowa should tackle right now is illegal immigration.  Reynolds is not putting the needs of her home state first, she is putting Texas’ needs first. Her job as the governor of Iowa mandates taking responsibility for protecting the state but sending a hundred Iowa officers to another part of the country doesn’t help Iowa.

If anything, this decision only weakens Iowa, considering it wasn’t that long ago Iowa suffered a mass shooting in January. Iowa needs more police officers and more protection from gun violence than it does for border crisis in another state several thousands of miles away.

Reynolds should not be placing the needs of Texas ahead of Iowa, that is solely Texas’s responsibility alone. Illegal immigration will not affect Iowa, but a lack of officers will.

She claims she wants to protect the country, but that is not her job. Reynolds job is to protect and manage Iowa, and only Iowa. It is time for her to return to her duty.

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About the Contributors
Aaron El-Kerdani
Aaron El-Kerdani, Opinions Columnist
Fouad "Aaron" El-Kerdani is a third year student a the University of Iowa double majoring in Journalism and Cinema. Prior to joining The Daily Iowan, Aaron did some journalism work for his classess involving interviews, photography, video editing, traveling to another country to cover an event, and his experience in film classess helped him develop these skills and gain knowledge on camera work and writing.
Emily Nyberg
Emily Nyberg, Visual Editor
Emily Nyberg is a second-year student at the University of Iowa double majoring in Journalism and Cinematic arts. Prior to her role as a Visual Editor, Emily was a Photojournalist, and a News Reporter covering higher education.