Jilka Visits U.S. / Mexico Border on Fact-Finding Mission
Todd Pittenger - Thu 04:00 PM 07/29/2010
Alan Jilka (left) talks with Ciudad Juarez Mayor Jose Reyes Ferriz (right) during his border trip this week.
First district congressional candidate Alan Jilka is back from a four-day swing to the U.S. / Mexico border where he gathered information about border security.
According to the Jilka Campaign, he visited with local and federal officials to discuss border security. The trip originated after Jilka reached out to Ciudad Juarez Mayor Jose Reyes Ferriz, a fellow Notre Dame alumnus.
Jilka visited the site where on July 14, a drug gang lured federal law enforcement officers to a street in downtown Juarez and detonated a car bomb, killing three police officers and injuring eleven bystanders. US officials with the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives reported that 22 pounds of explosives were used in the making of the bomb.
Earlier Monday, Jilka met with El Paso Mayor John Cook, who pointed out that although his city has received over 30,000 refugees from Juarez in the last two years, El Paso remains one of the safest cities in America with just one reported murder all of last year. Juarez last year reported over 3,000 murders.
On Tuesday, Jilka traveled to Arizona to meet with the Tucson Mayor Bob Walkup, Nogales Chief of Police Jeffrey Kirkham, and with representatives from the office of Congressman Raul Grijalva.
On Wednesday he met with representatives from the office of Gabrielle Giffords. Both Grijalva's and Giffords districts border Mexico.
Jilka says that the US/Mexico border relationship is "incredibly complex with tremendous implications on America's economic future and national security." He went on to say "with the tremendous amount of drug-related violence on the border, Congress must act to secure the border region, and to enact comprehensive immigration reform that protects citizens and expands the economy."