Governor Greg Abbott of Texas this week announced new efforts to “fill the dangerous gaps left by the Biden Administration’s refusal to secure the border.” Operation Lone Star, a state program launched last year in response to President Biden’s soft immigration policies, has resulted in the apprehension of 233,000 migrants, 13,600 criminal arrests, and more than 11,000 felony charges. A press release from the governor’s office cited seizure of 3,700 weapons, nearly $30 million in currency, as well as 298 million lethal doses seized by state officials throughout Texas.
The Texas governor revealed Wednesday that he and the Governor of the Mexican state of Nuevo Leon entered into an agreement to secure a piece of shared border. In a memorandum of understanding, Governor Greg Abbott and Governor Samuel Garcia expressed their “mutual interest in ensuring that their shared border is secure.” Texas looks to address the anticipated rise in “cartel-facilitated smuggling through the use of unsafe vehicles due to President Biden’s decision to end Title 42 expulsions.” New measures implemented include more comprehensive safety inspections of vehicles entering Texas and joint cooperation between both states to stem the flow of illicit drugs and illegal migrants.
Ahead of next month’s end to Title 42 expulsions, the Lone Star State’s governor announced “the first in a series of aggressive actions.” Noting that the Department of Homeland Security “has no plan for addressing the anticipated surge of illegal immigrants when Title 42 expulsions end, and because DHS is expected to release large groups of migrants into Texas communities,” Abbott vowed to send illegal migrants to Washington D.C. via charter bus or flights.
The move unsurprisingly drew sharp criticism from the White House, as Press Secretary Jen Psaki described the governor’s announcement as a “publicity stunt.” She further reminded reporters “that immigration policy and law is overseen by the federal government, not state governments” and blamed Abbott for gridlock at the border from enhanced vehicle inspections.
Publicity stunt or not, gridlock or not, Texas steps in to do what the federal government continuously fails to do in policing its borders and protecting its citizens.