President Trump is sending rangers from some of the country's largest national parks "to the U.S.-Mexico border to help stop drug traffickers and illegal immigration," the USA Today Network reports. "The orders have come as Congress has refused to fund Trump’s border wall, the signature promise of his presidential campaign."
Parks tapped for rangers include the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, the Blue Ridge Parkway, Rocky Mountain National Park, Zion National Park and Shenandoah National Park and others. "Most rangers have been detailed to one of two border sites: Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge in Arizona and Big Bend National Park in southwest Texas," USA Today reports. The Great Smoky Mountains park "was asked to send two park rangers for two-week details at the border, but only sent one," according to a park spokeswoman.
The program began as a pilot in May 2018, "then expanded in October amid record numbers of border crossings," USA Today reports. "Park officials say they’ve been told they should continue sending rangers to the border through September 2020."