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Last week, President Bush and Mexican President Vicente Fox pledged to become “partners” who are committed to “building a safer, more democratic and more prosperous hemisphere.”

“In this age of terror,” said Bush, “the security of our borders is more important than ever, and the cooperation between Mexico and American border and law enforcement is stronger than ever.”

Mingling at Bush’s Crawford, Texas, ranch, both men said that, through a “Border Partnership Agreement,” their governments were committed to “improving the infrastructure at ports of entry along our common border,” while “using technology to allow law-abiding travelers to cross the border quickly and easily” as “officials concentrate on stopping possible threats.”

“Our Mexican and American officials are working together to arrest dangerous criminals, including drug smugglers and those who traffic in human beings. President Fox and I are determined to protect the safety of American people and the Mexican people,” Bush said.

Truth is, this pow-wow is nothing more than political lip service. Bush was trying to appease Hispanic voters in the U.S. while throwing a bone to Mexico. But to hear U.S. Border Patrol agents and residents who live along our porous 2,000-mile southwestern border, something more dramatic than fancy speeches will have to be implemented to stop the unending flow of illegal immigrants and drugs into America.

  • Looking past Bush’s political posturing, Americans should be asking our president if he pressed his Mexican counterpart on the issue of Mexican military and police making armed incursions into our country.

  • Americans should be asking why the Mexican president cannot control elements of his military and police that have been spotted providing armed cover for drug runners and people smugglers.

  • Americans should be asking Bush why he – once the governor of Texas, a state overrun with illegal immigrants – isn’t doing more to insist our national borders be honored.

  • Americans should be asking Bush why Mexico puts its own army on the border, but U.S. troops are being used to protect national boundaries overseas and not our own.

  • Americans should be asking Bush why he discussed “free and fair trade” with Fox and not why the Mexican leader encourages the export of his own poverty to the United States.

  • Americans should be asking Bush why our taxpayers should pick up the tab for services provided to illegal aliens instead of Mexican taxpayers.

  • And we should be asking our president why 8 to 10 million illegals are still in the U.S. instead of in their country of origin, especially at a time of heightened concern over terrorism.

Instead, Bush pushed the economic button. “We will continue to work together, and with Canada, to enhance our common prosperity. Selling American goods and services in foreign markets is vital to the American economy,” he said in a speech at his ranch, attended by Fox.

As columnist and author Samuel Francis notes, “Economic Man” is more important than national security.

“Earlier this year, I proposed a temporary worker program, not an amnesty program, that will offer legal status as temporary workers to undocumented men and women who were employed in the United States when I announced this proposal,” Bush said.

“Under this program, America will also welcome workers from foreign countries who have been offered jobs by American employers that no American has filled. … This program will match willing workers with willing employers, without disadvantaging those who have followed the law and waited in line to achieve American citizenship.”

Employment is important, no doubt. But millions more illegal aliens, coupled with new terrorist attacks, will devastate our economy.

In reality, Bush – with Fox’s blessing – did little more this past week than fool Americans into thinking he was serious about border security and our vast illegal immigration problem. The continued flow of humanity across our borders proves otherwise.

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