Mayor Alan Long of Murrieta put together a panel of hard-working officials, each of whom is doing his best. The panelists and the citizens all got a mostly respectful hearing. The panelists provided a number of useful answers, but none of those answers addressed the root problem.

The answers did make clear, if inadvertently, that the U.S. federal government is literally focusing its efforts on processing illegals into the United States, where it is fully understood they will be unsupervised. As one lady said to the ICE agent on the panel, “You’re basically acting as coyotes for these people.”

Mayor Long stressed that only the federal government can fix the root problem. But he inaccurately identified the fix as “immigration reform”: legislation on which Democrats and Republicans have to come together. We don’t need immigration reform to deal with the current crisis. All the laws we need are already on the books.

The protesters who had turned out to block the buses the day before – many of whom were at the meeting last night – recognized that the town hall meeting has changed nothing, and that the Border Patrol intends to keep trying to deliver illegals to the Murrieta station for processing. So they plan to continue protesting and blocking buses. The next delivery is expected on 4 July, probably late at night.

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