SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — Gov. Susana Martinez is blaming President Barack Obama and Congress for the surge in Central American immigrants attempting to enter the country illegally.

The nation’s only Latina governor said in a statement Tuesday the latest wave is a byproduct of mixed signals on the federal level and “a failure of leadership.”

As a result, the Republican says immigrant parents are dropping off their children at the border and are “expecting the federal government to just throw up its hands and let them in.”

Her comments come after immigration authorities opened a temporary detention center in southeastern New Mexico aimed at housing around 700 immigrant women and children.

A rising star within the GOP, Martinez has told her party in the past to tone down its rhetoric around immigration.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)


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