Border patrol cancels its election day “mobile field force demonstration”

Border patrol cancels its election day “mobile field force demonstration”

by digby

A moment of sanity:

U.S. Customs and Border Protection abruptly canceled a crowd-control exercise it had planned near a Hispanic neighborhood in El Paso on Tuesday after critics raised concerns that the presence of so many armed border agents could discourage voting.

The agency had planned to stage a “mobile field force demonstration” Tuesday morning at the Paso del Norte border crossing, in an area adjacent to a neighborhood known as Chihuahuita with about 100 modest homes.

After lawmakers, activists and the American Civil Liberties Union questioned the decision to conduct the exercise on Election Day, Border Patrol agents said it had been postponed.

The controversy flared as voters began going to the polls in a city where high turnout is especially crucial to the Senate campaign of Rep. Beto O’Rourke, the El Paso Democratic candidate challenging Republican Sen. Ted Cruz.

CBP and Homeland Security officials rejected allegations that the training exercises had any relation to the election.

It might even be true. But it says something that they feel the need to stage such a demonstration near a Hispanic neighborhood in the first place.

It's ridiculous that voting is so contentious in this country that this kind of thing has to be monitored constantly.

Reminder: there is no systematic voter fraud in this country. It simply doesn't exist. But vote suppression is more and more prevalent, especially now that the wingnut Supreme Court decided that it doesn't exist.

Our democracy is in crisis for a lot of reasons but this is right at the top of our list of problems.