02/27/2013 03:57 pm ET

U.S.-Mexico Border Already Secure, Says Nogales Mayor Arturo Garino (VIDEO)

As immigration reform discussions move forward, politicians in Washington are demanding that the federal government secure the border with Mexico before dealing with the estimated 11.1 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States.

But this Arizona mayor says the border is already quite secure.

"We have more law enforcement officers and agencies than anywhere else," the city's Mayor Arturo Garino told Alicia Menendez during an appearance on HuffPost Live. "We're very safe in Nogales."

Garino said that crime has actually dropped over the last two years in his city.

"Right now, I believe it's as secure as can be," Garino said, referring to the U.S.-Mexico border. "And to use that component for immigration reform, I think is going off the other end."

The border mayor went on to slam politicians in the north of his state and in Washington for failing to foster trade and improve relations with Mexico.

Garino isn't the only one asking Congress to reassess it's commitment to securing a border that many view as more secure than ever.

The Associated Press said in a report published this month that:

The 1,954-mile border with Mexico is more difficult to breach than ever... Two decades ago, fewer than 4,000 Border Patrol agents manned the entire Southwest border. Today there are 18,500. Some 651 miles of fence have been built, most of that since 2005.

Apprehensions for illegal entry are down and cities along the U.S.-Mexico border are among the safest in the country.

Hear what Nogales Mayor Arturo Garino has to say in the HuffPost Live clip above.



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