One of the first steps President Biden took when he took office nearly six months ago was to halt construction of the wall his predecessor planned along the US-Mexico border, such a crazy project. in its reasoning than in its scope. Now Texas Governor Greg Abbott has donned the mantle of madness of former President Trump and announced that if the Biden administration won’t build the wall, well, dagnabit, Texas will! (No, not his real words.)
It is unclear exactly how Abbott plans to do this, given federal environmental regulations the Trump administration might ignore, but the state cannot, and the amount of private land the state is expected to requisition (exceeding the government, anyone?) to build the wall. Two years ago, 162 miles of Trump administration fencing planned to build in Texas included 144 miles of private land. What will these sales and condemnation procedures cost Texan taxpayers from now on? Now, the nation will have to wait for such trivial details. Next week, says the governor, everything will be said.
Poor Texas. However, Californians can’t laugh too much. Caitlyn Jenner, who is among the candidates who hope to replace Gov. Gavin Newsom if voters decide to recall him, told ABC’s “The View” on Wednesday that she, too, as governor “would shut down the southern border.” on all state lands would end the border wall.
Federal walls and fences already cover 105 miles of the 140-mile California-Mexico border, and anything Governor Jenner could add to that would be minimal, given that the state owns virtually no land. at the border (and good luck securing funding from the state legislature). It’s a silly political stance, but perhaps a good soundtrack for Trump immigration hardliners who, let’s note, are not a very large group in the California electorate. But Jenner is entitled to his electoral strategy.
Oddly, Jenner also said in the same interview that she would do “the best job we can do to protect our Eastern Front.” Well, that’s good news. I can’t pay too much attention to these people from Arizona and Nevada.
It is a political posture, of course. States should not build defensive barriers along national borders. And local authorities should also not get involved in the enforcement of federal immigration laws, as this leads immigrant communities to avoid reporting crimes as victims or witnesses. Nonetheless, Abbott said that “persons who enter Texas illegally will be subject to arrest and detention for trespassing.” Trespassing on whose property? And what is the link between immigration status and code intrusion?
The nation faces significant issues with immigration, especially enforcement. Apprehensions along the southern border – a measure of illegal immigration – are the highest in recent years, and the Biden administration continues to track some, according to new customs and border protection data. of the Trump administration’s most draconian measures, including summarily returning people to Mexico without giving them the ability to pursue legal options to seek to remain in the United States.
Meanwhile, in early June, Abbott ordered the closure of state-approved facilities through which 52 organizations care for unaccompanied minors under contract with the federal government. The federal government has gone to court to challenge the order, but if Abbott is successful, it will throw living spaces for hundreds of unaccompanied minors into limbo, potentially forcing them to stay longer in non-border detention centers. suitable for the task. What exactly does Abbott think such a cruel policy will solve?
Enough of this nonsense. This country will not find a way to solve its considerable problems, including immigration policies and law enforcement, as long as political actors get bogged down in theatrical and recalcitrant postures.
This story originally appeared in the Los Angeles Times.