State Watch

Texas governor sends fleet of cars to southern border to form barrier

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) this week sent hundreds of Texas Department of Public Safety cars to create a “steel wall” to block migrants from crossing the border into the United States. 

Abbott said in an interview on Fox News that the wall of vehicles prevented people from “walking into the state of Texas.” 

The move from the Texas governor comes amid droves of mostly Haitian nationals making their way to the southern border to seek refuge in the U.S. after political turmoil and a natural disaster has shaken their home country. The migrants have created a makeshift camp at the border under a bridge near Del Rio, Texas.  

Abbott, who has garnered national attention in recent weeks for his policies on the coronavirus pandemic and his signing of abortion restrictions, has been critical of the Biden administration after more about 15,000 migrants made their way to the southern border. 

“If Biden stepped up and followed that court order, we would not see the chaos that we’re seeing in Del Rio today,” Abbott told Fox News.

Abbott added via tweet that his state was “doing Biden’s job for him.”

A federal appeals court earlier this month overturned a judge’s order blocking the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) from shifting its immigration enforcement policies. The ruling from the appeals court was a significant win for the Biden administration. 

A panel from the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals to stay an injunction by a district court judge that would have prohibited DHS from enforcing a memo that would have scaled back Trump-era immigration policies to crack down on undocumented immigrants. 

In the past, Abbott has been a supporter of hardline immigration policies, and has also supported a border wall between the U.S. and Mexico. 

“Because the Biden administration has been promoting and allowing open border policies, it has been the state of Texas that had to step up,” Abbott said Tuesday from Del Rio. 

The Biden administration has said it will ramp up its deportations of Haitain migrants from the region. Deportees who spoke to The Washington Post described their treatment during transit as being chained “like a slave.”

The Biden administration has also faced mounting criticism of his handling of the crisis. 

Photos of border agents on horseback chasing migrants under the Del Rio bridge drew outrage earlier this week prompting DHS to investigate the treatment of migrants in Texas. 

On Tuesday, Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said that he was “horrified” at the images that came out of Del Rio. 

“I was horrified to see the images, and we look forward to learning the facts that are produced from the investigation, and we will take actions that those facts compel,” he said.

Tags Alejandro Mayorkas Greg Abbott

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