As President-elect Donald Trump remains focused on securing the Mexican border, senators from Maine say the northern border New England shares with Canada is being neglected.
“There are concerns about staffing levels and about available technology,”Senator Angus King (I-Maine) said . “How do you patrol a border of that magnitude?”
The Canadian border is about 5,500 miles long and has around 5,700 border patrol agents and other officers monitoring it.
“It is so porous, particularly compared to the highly fortified southern border,” Senator Susan Collins (R-Maine) said.
The two Senators have worked across the aisle to sponsor bipartisan legislation, called the Northern Border Security Review Act. The $1 million bill, which has passed unanimously in the House and Senate, calls for a comprehensive review of the Canadian border’s staffing, resources, and potential threats.
“We are not as well guarded as we should be,” Collins said.
Coming off of a classified security briefing about the northern border, King said the biggest concerns include drugs, guns and terrorists.
“It was rather sobering,” he said.
Both Collins and King expect President Barack Obama to sign the legislation and start the process of studying and stepping up security to the north.