In what he called an “unprecedented action” necessitated because “President Biden refuses to do his job,” Governor Greg Abbott issued an executive order authorizing his state’s National Guard and Department of Public Safety of Texas to arrest immigrants who cross the border illegally between ports of entry and return them to Mexico.
“As President Biden refuses to do his job and enforce immigration laws enacted by Congress, the State of Texas is once again stepping up and taking unprecedented action to protect Americans and secure our border. south,” Abbott said in a press release Thursday announcing the zero-tolerance policy.
Only the federal government is legally authorized to enforce immigration law. As legal justification, Abbott cites Article IV, § 4 of the US Constitution.
“[T]he United States. . . must protect everyone [State in this Union] against invasion,” and thus forced the State of Texas to build a border wall, deploy state military forces, and enter into agreements as described in Article I, § 10 of the U.S. Constitution to secure the state of Texas and repel illegal immigration that funds the cartels.
Abbott’s office did not respond to a Post request for comment on whether he was bowing to pressure from former Trump official Ken Cuccinelli to declare an “invasion” on the border. Although Abbott did not issue an invasion declaration, he used the exact language that Cuccinelli coached several Texas counties to use to declare an “invasion” of the border on Tuesday.
Cuccinelli wanted Abbott to declare an invasion and enact a Title 42-style program where immigrants were “repealed at the border” and automatically turned back.
The move comes as Abbott’s polls drop following a school shooting in Uvalde, Texas that left 19 dead and two teachers and his support for a Texas abortion ban, according to a new poll of Texas voters. Abbott’s Democratic challenger Beto O’Rourke is gaining ground and is now six points behind the governor.
New York Post