Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) is sending a strong signal about how he would tackle Mexican drug cartels if he became the President of the United States. He has proposed a new set of “rules of engagement” to counteract the illegal drug trade at the southern border, a significant departure from the current administration’s approach.
During an interview this week with Jesse Watters of Fox News, DeSantis highlighted the severity of the situation at the U.S.-Mexico border. He relayed his experience of visiting the border, pointing out the porous nature of our defenses, particularly where the wall abruptly ends, allowing cartels to easily smuggle their illicit goods.
DeSantis Signals As President, He’ll Have New ‘Rules Of Engagement’ For Mexican Drug Cartels
“If you are in the cartels cutting through our fence to bring drugs in … that’s going to be the last thing you do. We’re going to leave you STONE COLD DEAD.” https://t.co/2bohVsRXnm
— Jimmy Smith (@jrs76) June 30, 2023
“These cartels are causing a lot of harm,” DeSantis stated, expressing his commitment to safeguarding American lives from the dangers of drug trafficking, particularly fentanyl. He elucidated his plan to reinforce the border, potentially involving the military. “If you are in the cartels cutting through our fence to bring drugs in, that’s going to be the last thing you do because we’re going to leave you stone cold dead. We are having adequate rules of engagement.”
DeSantis isn’t just talking about walls, though. His approach to border security and the drug trade encompasses more than simply bolstering physical barriers. He’s looking at a multifaceted strategy to combat this transnational threat. DeSantis stated as part of his campaign platform, “I will wage war on narco-trafficking in Mexico and throughout Latin America. I will designate the Mexican drug cartels as Transnational Criminal Organizations, and I will sanction cartels, their leaders, and other entities that provide support for drug trafficking.”
This decisive stand sends a clear message to drug cartels: a DeSantis administration won’t be passive in the face of this threat. He’s set his sights on countering their operations at the border and beyond, potentially including direct action and sanctions against those who aid their operations.
Moreover, he’s ready to take the fight to the cartels if the Mexican government fails to take adequate action. He’s even floated the idea of deploying U.S. military forces, specifically the Coast Guard and Navy, to prevent the flow of drug precursor chemicals through Mexican ports.
While this hard-line stance might raise eyebrows, it’s worth remembering the gravity of our situation. DeSantis noted, “Tens of thousands of our fellow citizens die from fentanyl overdoses each year.” By viewing the drug cartels as the grave national security threat they are, DeSantis is proposing to take proactive steps to safeguard American lives and livelihoods.
Of course, his approach will undoubtedly be subject to scrutiny and debate. But given the current state of the U.S.-Mexico border and the lives at stake, perhaps it’s time for new “rules of engagement,” as DeSantis suggests. As a GOP presidential hopeful, DeSantis is showing he’s willing to take bold, assertive steps to address an issue that’s caused far too many American families immeasurable grief.