Today the administration announced it would station about 400 National Guard troops along the Northern Border to supplement Customs and Border Patrol Staff.

Deploying the National Guard to the border is a welcomed short-term fix for a problem that demands a longer-term view and commitment from the Administration. The long-term solution starts with increasing the number of trained staff at the border and investing in new technology.

Since I came to the Senate in 1993, I have championed efforts to increase security at the Northern Border. I am concerned that the Administration may not fully appreciate the problems we face at the Northern Border.

Security has got to be our top concern. The Northern Border is some 4000 miles long, most of it rural and unmarked. It is also separates us from our largest trading partner. Yet the importance of maintaining an efficient flow of commerce between our two nations and protecting the jobs this trade creates cannot be underestimated, especially in these tough economic times.

Congress has acted to provide additional staffing and new technologies for the Northern Border with little support from the Administration.

Since September 11th, longer lines at the borders have plagued both travelers and international commerce. Adding military personnel is a step; but what is needed is more trained permanent staffing. Only then can we make our border safe and efficient for commercial traffic, while protecting our national security interests.