Border Critical to the Economies of U.S. and Mexico

by Sen. Jose’ Rodriguez

I represent more than 350 miles of the U.S.-Mexico border in Texas, including six international ports of entry.

One of these is a soon-to-open crossing at the Tornillo-Guadalupe Port of Entry, which already has had a significant economic impact on the rural communities adjacent to the city of El Paso, which anchors the western tip of Senate District 29.

In the southeast portion of Senate District 29, auto and pedestrian bridge and railroad bridge expansions will spur new economic activity in the Trans-Pecos region.

Developing and improving ports-of-entry benefits Texas – where almost a half million jobs rely on business with Mexico – and the country, as trade between the U.S. and Mexico totaled more than $500 billion in 2014.

That level of commerce is part of what makes the border, about 2,000 miles in all, with 1,241 miles in Texas stretching southeast from El Paso to Brownsville, such a valuable region.

Our human capital is the other piece of the equation, with a young population positioned for global success in an increasingly interconnected world. Residents have grown up dealing with multiple languages and cultures, and from Los Angeles to San Diego to El Paso to Houston, San Antonio, and Brownsville, they represent the cutting edge of our country in the 21st century.

Too many people don’t know about this reality, and our communities have been misrepresented – or even outright lied about – to stir fears that are exploited for political gain.

Full Opinion at El Paso Times

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