California will deploy 400 members of the National Guard in response to President Trump's request for military action at the southern border, Gov. Jerry Brown (D) announced Wednesday. The deployment, however, will not go toward immigration enforcement.
"This will not be a mission to build a new wall. It will not be a mission to round up women and children or detain people escaping violence and seeking a better life," Brown said Wednesday in a statement. Rather, California's governor has agreed to accept federal funding for increased National Guard presence in order to focus on halting human trafficking and the smuggling of drugs and firearms into the state.
Brown has frequently clashed with the Trump administration over immigration enforcement strategies, and he specifically stated Wednesday that "the California National Guard will not be enforcing federal immigration laws." Attorney General Jeff Sessions has been especially frustrated with Brown's rejection of increased Immigration and Customs Enforcement efforts, announcing last month that the Department of Justice would sue California for "intentionally obstructing" ICE.
When Trump called for increased military presence in border states, Arizona and Texas quickly jumped on board while California delayed its response. The Department of Homeland Security stated that the National Guard would not be deployed for direct immigration enforcement such as arrests, but for border surveillance and general support.