Republican Gov. Greg Abbott says the wall will keep communities “safe” amid questions about the movement’s legality.
The Republican governor of the U.S. state of Texas has announced plans to build a wall along the border with Mexico, and has received criticism from human rights organizations and advocacy groups.
However, Greg Abbott has not offered any details on his plans to build the new one barrier. It has also launched an aggressive campaign to arrest immigrants and asylum seekers. The moves could provoke a new confrontation with the Biden administration over immigration.
Abbott did not say what new barrier Texas would raise, where it would be installed along the state’s 1,930-mile border or what it would be like when it made the announcement Thursday in a room full of sheriffs at the border. city of Del Rio. He promised that more would be revealed next week.
Judge Richard Cortez of Hidalgo County, one of Texas’ top border counties, said Friday that he believes the goal is to establish new barriers that would give state soldiers reasons to arrest or harm migrants around them. in prison for six months.
“I understand why he wants to do it. It’s a tool that leads him to a Class B foul, “Cortez said. He was skeptical about whether the prison deterred immigrants traveling hundreds of miles and risking death to get to the U.S.
On Friday, Abbott spokeswoman Renae Eze did not provide further details on the barrier plan and referred questions about arrests to a letter Abbott and Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey sent Thursday to other governors to request -those who sent their own ranks to the border. The letter informs governors that their officers would arrive with the “power to arrest migrants who illegally cross the border into our territory.”
Legal experts said the U.S. Supreme Court has made it clear that the power to enforce immigration law is in the hands of the federal government, including nullifying the efforts of Arizona Republicans a decade ago.
U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alexander Mayorkas declined to comment on the Texas governor’s plans while visiting a cybersecurity center in the city of Los Angeles shortly after Abbott’s announcement.
Biden suspended the construction of a border wall when he took office and on Friday, his administration announced a plan to divert funding from former President Donald Trump. signature project.
Abbott, who is running for re-election next year and has not ruled out the White House presentation in 2024, has made immigration a central issue since Biden took office and took increasing action so, according to he, is the failure of the new administration to curb the flow of crosses.
“In the long run, only Congress and the president can fix our broken border,” Abbott told Del Rio. “But in the meantime, Texas will do everything it can, including starting arrests, to protect our community, to keep out cartels and smugglers, and to protect your community.”
Despite relaxing since March, a large number of border appearances have severely challenged the Biden administration. Vice President Kamala Harris sent a message to those planning to make the trip during a visit to Guatemala City this week: “Don’t come.”
Abbott earlier this month moved to close more than 50 shelters in Texas that house about 4,000 migrant children, arguing that the federal government cannot force the state to continue issuing licenses in response to a federal problem. The Biden administration has threatened to sue unless this order is revoked.
The Trump administration built more than 725 km (450 miles) of border wall, almost all replacing smaller designs or dilapidated sections.
Cortez said he would support Abbott’s help build more prison capacity, but would like the county to remain at the helm of the extra space. Beyond the border in rural Starr County, Judge Eloy Vera said his 270-bed prison is close to capacity, but it still has room, and said Abbott’s description of the border is not the one you see in your area.
Stephen Yale-Loehr, who teaches immigration law at Cornell Law School, said the federal government is likely to be challenged if the state has authority to build barriers along the border.
“While states can do certain things under state immigration law, raising barriers along the border or detaining migrants is beyond my point of view,” he said.