Julián Aguilar Reporter

Julián Aguilar reports on politics and border affairs from the Texas-Mexico border. His focuses include immigration reform and enforcement, voter ID, international trade, border security, and the drug trade. His political coverage has included local, legislative and congressional races in Texas, as well as local and national elections in Mexico. Before joining the Tribune, he was a freelance writer for the Fort Worth Weekly; a government and crime reporter for the Laredo Morning Times; and a political writer for the Rio Grande Guardian. A native of El Paso, he has a bachelor's degree in English from the University of Texas and a master's degree in journalism from the Frank W. Mayborn Graduate Institute of Journalism at the University of North Texas.

Recent Contributions

Cornyn: GOP Must Lead and Not Throw Tantrums

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, is interviewed by Karen Tumulty of The Washington Post at the Texas Tribune Festival on Sept. 20, 2014.
U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, is interviewed by Karen Tumulty of The Washington Post at the Texas Tribune Festival on Sept. 20, 2014.

U.S. Sen. John Cornyn said on Saturday that he lamented his party’s contribution to what he said was a dysfunctional government, and he criticized the Obama administration's handling of the current crisis over the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

Against the Odds, Finding Refuge in El Paso

A woman, who asked not to be identified because she fears for her safety, stands near the pulpit at the end of service at First Baptist Church on Sunday, Sept. 14, 2014, in El Paso. The woman fled Boko Haram in Nigeria and is now seeking asylum.
A woman, who asked not to be identified because she fears for her safety, stands near the pulpit at the end of service at First Baptist Church on Sunday, Sept. 14, 2014, in El Paso. The woman fled Boko Haram in Nigeria and is now seeking asylum.

Four years after fleeing Somalia, Dekha Hassan-Mohamed is living in El Paso after winning an asylum claim and bucking a national trend. Her lawyer is seeking the same protection for another client who fled Nigeria. Both women are grateful for the new chapters of their lives in El Paso. 

Cuellar: Debate on Immigration Surge Set to Re-emerge

US Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX 28th District) speaks with Rep. Doug Miller R-New Braunfels, during a visit to the Texas Capitol on February 19th, 2013.
US Congressman Henry Cuellar (D-TX 28th District) speaks with Rep. Doug Miller R-New Braunfels, during a visit to the Texas Capitol on February 19th, 2013.

The congressional debate about how to address the influx of unaccompanied Central American minors crossing illegally into Texas is likely to re-emerge later this year when lawmakers debate an omnibus budget bill, according to a Texas lawmaker.

On Border, Questions Over National Guard Troops' Needs

Governor Rick Perry gives a pep talk to National Guard troops training for deployment to the Texas border at Camp Swift on August 13, 2014.
Governor Rick Perry gives a pep talk to National Guard troops training for deployment to the Texas border at Camp Swift on August 13, 2014.

Democrats say media reports that some National Guard troops on the border haven't been paid and can't afford basic necessities are infuriating. Republican Gov. Rick Perry's office says the National Guard is fully equipped to help them. 

Guard's Arrival on Border Brings Reassurance, Concerns

Texas Department of Public Safety officers patrol Anzalduas Park as part of Operation Strong Safety. Texas National Guard soldiers deployed to the area on Monday will help DPS in its mission, officials said.
Texas Department of Public Safety officers patrol Anzalduas Park as part of Operation Strong Safety. Texas National Guard soldiers deployed to the area on Monday will help DPS in its mission, officials said.

The arrival of the Texas National Guard to the border has been met with praise by some who say the state is taking the lead in securing the border. Others say the deployment is overkill that only serves to hamper the local economy.

Attorneys Struggling to Help Migrants Navigate Legal System

A Catholic Charities shelter at Sacred Heart Church in McAllen helps hundreds of displaced immigrants who have crossed the Texas-Mexico border. Texas immigration lawyers are scrambling to coordinate representation for many of the migrants.
A Catholic Charities shelter at Sacred Heart Church in McAllen helps hundreds of displaced immigrants who have crossed the Texas-Mexico border. Texas immigration lawyers are scrambling to coordinate representation for many of the migrants.

Texas immigration lawyers are scrambling to coordinate representation for the thousands of Central American migrants who have crossed into Texas illegally.