Put California Prisons in Mexico

We already send lots of tourists to Mexico, why not prisoners too?

The Sacramento Bee newspaper is reporting that Governor Schwarzenegger, appearing before the Sacramento Press Club on Monday, suggested that one solution to California’s prison problem might be for the state to build prisons in Mexico and finance their operating costs.

But, his idea, which appears to be a trial balloon to test the waters, went further. He said that these prisons could house the undocumented immigrants, convicted of crimes in California, who are otherwise imprisoned here. He mentioned that there are 20,000 prison inmates in California now who are not legal immigrants.

The predictable negative response from certain quarters was forthcoming, for sure. But, this idea has some positive aspects.

First, it would reduce the problem of prison overcrowding in California. Second, it would break the stranglehold the prison guards union has on our prison system and state budget by employing lower cost non-union Mexican citizens in Mexico. Third, would reduce pressure on the unfunded liability the State employee pension system faces because the Mexican workers need not be offered such a lucrative retirement plan. And fourth, since undocumented inmates in California are usually deported after they serve their sentence, those who are from Mexico would be home upon their release.

This idea should be seriously explored by the Governor’s administration and the Legislature. Maybe it is not feasible, then again maybe it is. For openers the thought of creating much needed jobs in Mexico to do California’s work and at a much lower cost is intriguing. Most everyone thinks it is time for bold thinking – is this one bold enough for you?

About Over But Not Out

A retired Orange County employee, and moderate Republican. The editor seriously does not know OBNO's identity as did not the former editor, but his point of view is obviously interesting and valued.