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Sarah Jacobs and her friend Ammar Campa-Najjar get Jacobs money

Does the Border Patrol need its dogs?

“Having reliable data on canine assists in drug seizures at checkpoints would help Border Patrol better assess the effectiveness of canines for checkpoint searches.”
“Having reliable data on canine assists in drug seizures at checkpoints would help Border Patrol better assess the effectiveness of canines for checkpoint searches.”

Billionaires served

One of San Diego’s most politically influential couples has had a notable run of late, thanks to a campaign contribution of nearly $100,000 from billionaire Qualcomm co-founder Irwin Jacobs and his wife Joan, and a Tijuana junket paid for by a group backed by the liberal Open Society Foundation, a George Soros co-founded non-profit.

Is the personal getting political for Ammar Campa-Najjar?

On April 21, per disclosure filings, the Jacobs duo each kicked in $49,000 to a campaign committee calling itself Residents for a Brighter Chula Vista, Supporting Ammar Campa-Najjar for Mayor. The unmarried Campa-Najjar, who lost to Republican Darrell Issa in a 2020 50th District House battle, is, per multiple sources, in a relationship with similarly unmarried 53 District Democratic Congresswoman Sara Jacobs, granddaughter of Joan and Irwin Jacobs, who live in La Jolla. As of the latest count, Campa-Najjar had a narrow lead for second place in the Chula Vista race, setting him up to run against first-place finisher, Republican Councilman John McCann.

Meanwhile, Sara Jacobs picked up considerable national publicity on a tour of Tijuana paid for by The Council for Global Equality. In an April 5 letter to the House Ethics Committee, the group described itself as “a coalition of prominent U.S.-based human rights and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex (‘LGBTQI’) advocacy organizations focused on advancing human rights for LGBTQI populations through U.S. foreign policy.”

According to the group’s website, “the Council has been generously funded primarily by the following philanthropic institutions: Arcus Foundation, Sigrid Rausing Trust, Open Society Foundations, and an anonymous source.” Adds the blurb: “Funds for lobbying-related activities are segregated and tracked separately. The annual budget for the Council has averaged approximately $865,000, with 85% of those expenses going to its program work.”

Sara Jacobs’s cross-border jaunt, which took place May 6, cost the council a total of $1140, including $448 in transportation expenses, $58.75 to cover meals, and $663 for “Security, interpreter, Covid test/masks,” according to a May 18 Post Travel Disclosure report filed by Jacobs with the House Ethics Commission. She “attended meetings organized by the Council for Global Equality with asylum seekers in order to highlight the issues at the border for marginalized groups,” per the disclosure.

Paola Guzman, an aide to Jacobs, also made the trip and reported the same expenses covered by the coalition, as did Jacobs’s fellow San Diego House Democrat Juan Vargas and his aide Lawrence Cohen, though the latter pair’s transportation expenses were reported to be $172 each.

Sara Jacobs: bringing Pride worldwide.

“I visited Tijuana with congressional colleagues and advocates from @Global_Equality to learn more about the threats LGBTQ+ asylum seekers face and what we can do to help,” Jacobs subsequently tweeted. “I’ll never stop working for human rights for LGBTQ+ folks and asylees, on both sides of the border.”

Drug dog data dilemma

The Border Patrol has failed to keep track of its drug-sniffing dogs, says a June 6 audit by the Government Accountability Office, leading to possible misuse. “Checkpoint officials from all 13 selected checkpoints we interviewed told us that canines were critical to the checkpoint mission, including to drug seizures.” But statistics belied the statements.

“For example, data showed canines assisted with a small proportion of drug seizure events in Yuma (two percent) and Big Bend (four percent) and a large proportion of such events in Tucson (77 percent) and Rio Grande Valley (88 percent).” The variations kept on happening even after officers were ordered to keep better books. “Data integrity officials from the Yuma and Big Bend sectors offered contrasting explanations regarding the relatively low number of canine assists their agents documented,” the document continues.

“Yuma sector officials said that it did not seem reasonable that canines assisted with only two percent of drug seizure events at checkpoints in their sector. These officials acknowledged that they did not have a good oversight mechanism in place at the sector level to ensure that agents appropriately documented canine assists. In contrast, Big Bend sector data integrity officials said that it seemed reasonable that canines assisted with four percent of drug seizure events at sector checkpoints. Conclude the auditors: “Given these differing perspectives and the wide variation in data on canine assists, it is unclear whether Border Patrol is recording complete and reliable data on such assists. Having reliable data on canine assists in drug seizures at checkpoints would help Border Patrol better assess the effectiveness of canines for checkpoint searches and ensure that canines are properly utilized.”

— Matt Potter (@sdmattpotter)

The Reader offers $25 for news tips published in this column. Call our voice mail at 619-235-3000, ext. 440, or sandiegoreader.com/staff/matt-potter/contact/.

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“Having reliable data on canine assists in drug seizures at checkpoints would help Border Patrol better assess the effectiveness of canines for checkpoint searches.”
“Having reliable data on canine assists in drug seizures at checkpoints would help Border Patrol better assess the effectiveness of canines for checkpoint searches.”

Billionaires served

One of San Diego’s most politically influential couples has had a notable run of late, thanks to a campaign contribution of nearly $100,000 from billionaire Qualcomm co-founder Irwin Jacobs and his wife Joan, and a Tijuana junket paid for by a group backed by the liberal Open Society Foundation, a George Soros co-founded non-profit.

Is the personal getting political for Ammar Campa-Najjar?

On April 21, per disclosure filings, the Jacobs duo each kicked in $49,000 to a campaign committee calling itself Residents for a Brighter Chula Vista, Supporting Ammar Campa-Najjar for Mayor. The unmarried Campa-Najjar, who lost to Republican Darrell Issa in a 2020 50th District House battle, is, per multiple sources, in a relationship with similarly unmarried 53 District Democratic Congresswoman Sara Jacobs, granddaughter of Joan and Irwin Jacobs, who live in La Jolla. As of the latest count, Campa-Najjar had a narrow lead for second place in the Chula Vista race, setting him up to run against first-place finisher, Republican Councilman John McCann.

Meanwhile, Sara Jacobs picked up considerable national publicity on a tour of Tijuana paid for by The Council for Global Equality. In an April 5 letter to the House Ethics Committee, the group described itself as “a coalition of prominent U.S.-based human rights and lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and intersex (‘LGBTQI’) advocacy organizations focused on advancing human rights for LGBTQI populations through U.S. foreign policy.”

According to the group’s website, “the Council has been generously funded primarily by the following philanthropic institutions: Arcus Foundation, Sigrid Rausing Trust, Open Society Foundations, and an anonymous source.” Adds the blurb: “Funds for lobbying-related activities are segregated and tracked separately. The annual budget for the Council has averaged approximately $865,000, with 85% of those expenses going to its program work.”

Sara Jacobs’s cross-border jaunt, which took place May 6, cost the council a total of $1140, including $448 in transportation expenses, $58.75 to cover meals, and $663 for “Security, interpreter, Covid test/masks,” according to a May 18 Post Travel Disclosure report filed by Jacobs with the House Ethics Commission. She “attended meetings organized by the Council for Global Equality with asylum seekers in order to highlight the issues at the border for marginalized groups,” per the disclosure.

Paola Guzman, an aide to Jacobs, also made the trip and reported the same expenses covered by the coalition, as did Jacobs’s fellow San Diego House Democrat Juan Vargas and his aide Lawrence Cohen, though the latter pair’s transportation expenses were reported to be $172 each.

Sara Jacobs: bringing Pride worldwide.

“I visited Tijuana with congressional colleagues and advocates from @Global_Equality to learn more about the threats LGBTQ+ asylum seekers face and what we can do to help,” Jacobs subsequently tweeted. “I’ll never stop working for human rights for LGBTQ+ folks and asylees, on both sides of the border.”

Drug dog data dilemma

The Border Patrol has failed to keep track of its drug-sniffing dogs, says a June 6 audit by the Government Accountability Office, leading to possible misuse. “Checkpoint officials from all 13 selected checkpoints we interviewed told us that canines were critical to the checkpoint mission, including to drug seizures.” But statistics belied the statements.

“For example, data showed canines assisted with a small proportion of drug seizure events in Yuma (two percent) and Big Bend (four percent) and a large proportion of such events in Tucson (77 percent) and Rio Grande Valley (88 percent).” The variations kept on happening even after officers were ordered to keep better books. “Data integrity officials from the Yuma and Big Bend sectors offered contrasting explanations regarding the relatively low number of canine assists their agents documented,” the document continues.

“Yuma sector officials said that it did not seem reasonable that canines assisted with only two percent of drug seizure events at checkpoints in their sector. These officials acknowledged that they did not have a good oversight mechanism in place at the sector level to ensure that agents appropriately documented canine assists. In contrast, Big Bend sector data integrity officials said that it seemed reasonable that canines assisted with four percent of drug seizure events at sector checkpoints. Conclude the auditors: “Given these differing perspectives and the wide variation in data on canine assists, it is unclear whether Border Patrol is recording complete and reliable data on such assists. Having reliable data on canine assists in drug seizures at checkpoints would help Border Patrol better assess the effectiveness of canines for checkpoint searches and ensure that canines are properly utilized.”

— Matt Potter (@sdmattpotter)

The Reader offers $25 for news tips published in this column. Call our voice mail at 619-235-3000, ext. 440, or sandiegoreader.com/staff/matt-potter/contact/.

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