Oct 14, 2016

El Paso Times editorial: Border unions err standing by Donald Trump

National Border Patrol Council photo & logo

El Paso Times

(reprinted with permission)

Editorial Oct. 14, 2016


Border unions err standing by Donald Trump
Since a videotape surfaced showing Donald Trump boasting about sexually predatory behavior, a number of those who previously backed him have withdrawn their support.
The National Border Patrol Council is not among those abandoning the increasingly abhorrent Trump campaign.
“We continue to support Donald Trump for president,” Shawn Moran, a spokesman for the Border Patrol union, told the El Paso Times.
On Oct. 7, Moran tweeted photos of himself and other leaders of the Border Patrol union meeting with Trump. “Today’s meeting with @real-DonaldTrump It was an honor to be a part of this.”
At almost the exact moment Moran sent his tweet, the Washington Post released the “Access Hollywood” video of Trump boasting that he liked to force himself on women and sexually batter them.
Since the release of that tape, several women have come forward to say that Trump had touched them inappropriately or tried to force himself on them. Trump denies the allegations, but he has little credibility when women accuse him of acts that match his own boasts.
Decent people should not associate themselves with a man like Trump.
Law-enforcement officers cannot associate with him.
Sexual assault victims must feel trust with law-enforcement officers to take the often difficult step of coming forward with a complaint. That includes Border Patrol agents, who frequently come in contact with women who have been sexually assaulted on their perilous journey to the United States.
Some women likely will think twice about bringing a sexual assault complaint to a law-enforcement officer whose union supports a candidate who brags of being a sexual predator – and who an increasing number of women say actually is a sexual predator.
The National Border Patrol Council endorsed Trump despite – or perhaps because of – his inflammatory description of Mexican immigrants as rapists, criminals and drug dealers. Another union for border law-enforcement agents, the National ICE Council, also endorsed Trump.
 Recent revelations of Trump’s disgusting behavior gave many the push they needed to disavow his candidacy. The Border Patrol and ICE unions had an opportunity to fall back on their historic stance, declining to endorse a presidential candidate. To their shame, they have refused to do so.
Some Border Patrol agents from the El Paso sector in April tried to get their union local to renounce the Trump endorsement, a move that narrowly failed. Those agents acted boldly. It is too bad their national leadership lacks the same courage.
Rep. Beto O’Rourke, D-El Paso, who works closely with Border Patrol agents, has it right.
“Donald Trump is unfit for the presidency. Consider his fundamental lack of knowledge about the policies that a president will shape; his overt racism, sexism and xenophobia; and his dark appeal to the base instincts of the electorate,” O’Rourke said.
 “With this in mind, what does the Border Patrol union’s endorsement say to communities like ours? I’m fortunate to represent thousands of agents and have come to know many of them, good, hard-working men and women who put their lives on the line for this country. Their sacrifice and honor deserve better than Donald Trump.”