Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins (R) was the only Maryland official to sign on to a letter published as a full-page ad in The Washington Post calling for full funding of a southern border wall.
Forty law enforcement officials across the country signed the letter, which was paid for by America First Policies, a pro-Trump super PAC that has raised millions from anonymous donors.
“As proud members of law enforcement, we are writing to express our strong support for the full funding and construction of a wall across the U.S. southern border,” the law enforcement officials wrote. “This is a security measure that will protect American families and restore national sovereignty.”
Border wall funding is the sticking point in the debate over continued funding to keep the federal government open beyond the end of the week. While some agencies have been funded, a partial shutdown would affect about 800,000 federal workers, about half of whom are “essential” employees that would work without pay.
There are more than 3,700 federal government jobs based in Frederick County, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and a higher number of federal workers live in the county but work elsewhere.
In an interview with Fox 5 in Washington, D.C., Jenkins called government shutdowns nonsense. “Very honestly, I think government shutdowns are foolish because at the end of the day, everybody takes off, employees who are affected take off, they all come back to work, they all get their back pay,” he said.
Jenkins told Fox 5 he supported a border wall because the cost of education, health care and other programs for undocumented immigrants were greater than the cost of a more robust border. “I think in the long-term, building this wall, whatever this wall consists of, is far less expensive than what it’s going to cost us in the future by doing nothing,” the sheriff said.