WASHINGTON (AP) — Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer says she and President Barack Obama have agreed to try to work together on a solution to the nation’s immigration and border security woes.
Brewer also says Obama assured her that most of the 1,200 National Guard troops he is sending to the southern border will be coming to her state. Brewer recently signed a tough new immigration enforcement law that requires police to check people’s immigration status.
Obama has denounced the law as discriminatory.
Brewer spoke Thursday after a half-hour meeting with Obama in the Oval Office.
Supporters of an overhaul of U.S. immigration law have accused Obama of not pushing Congress hard enough to pass immigration legislation. Some have said Arizona’s law and tough immigration laws in other states are symptoms of a broken immigration system.
Arizona’s new law, scheduled to take effect July 29, will require police enforcing any other law to examine immigration status if there is reasonable suspicion a person is in the country illegally. It also makes being in the country illegally a state crime.
Obama says the law is the wrong approach to illegal immigration and his administration is combing through it and preparing for a possible legal challenge. Brewer has been soliciting donations from the law’s supporters to defend it.
In an interview Wednesday, Brewer said she hoped she and Obama could agree on solutions to improve border security.
Brewer said she wants to know how Obama’s plan to deploy up to 1,200 National Guard troops to the border with Mexico will affect Arizona and what else he has in mind to tighten border security.
She said she’ll make a pitch for her own proposal calling for more troops on the border, deployment of helicopters and surveillance drones and completion of a border fence.
The White House said it would lay out for Brewer the “unprecedented resources” dedicated over the past 16 months to secure the border.