With the number of illegal migrants flooding our southern border mushrooming daily under Biden-Harris, several Texas counties declared a border “invasion” on Tuesday to pressure Governor Greg Abbott to do the same.
Today Abbott stopped short of a formal declaration of an “invasion.” Still, he ordered the Texas National Guard and the state police to apprehend migrants who illegally cross the border from Mexico and take them back to ports of entry.
A formal declaration, proponents argue, would allow the governor to enforce ‘war powers’ and have state law enforcement personnel not only take migrants back to the border but directly deport them.
However, Abbott is wary of challenging the federal government directly on immigration after the Supreme Court shut down Arizona’s previous attempts in 2012.
The declaration by the counties doesn’t grant the counties any additional legal authority, and likely won’t pass legal muster — but officials are desperate to bring attention to the Biden border crisis.
As the New York Post reported:
“We’re being invaded. The facts are there,” said Kinney County Judge Tully Shahan at a press conference in Brackettville, Texas. “This is real. We want America to know this is real. America doesn’t know what’s happening here.”
County officials from Kinney, Goliad, Terrell and Uvalde Counties criticized the Biden Administration for what they called its “open border policy.”
The officials each shared stories of how their communities are being inundated by immigrants as humans and drugs are smuggled through their small towns on a daily basis.
The number of reported migrant encounters along the US-Mexico border once again made history in May — hitting a staggering 239,416 encounters, according to the latest available monthly Customs and Border Patrol statistics.
The counties were contacted by a former President Donald Trump official, Ken Cuccinelli, who has talked them into believing they can use the “self-help provision of the Constitution to declare an invasion.”
“This gives the governor, if he decided similarly, the authority to repeal that invasion,” Cuccinelli said at the press conference today.
Meanwhile, the New York Times (NYT) reports that:
Abbott has said that his administration is considering taking the further step of invoking war powers in order to deport unauthorized migrants but that there are legal concerns. Among them, he said, was the possibility that doing so could “expose law enforcement in the state of Texas to being prosecuted” by the federal government.
But Abbott may also be testing the limits of what a state governor can do as a way to get the Supreme Court involved. As the NYT notes:
“This is setting up a test case,” said Stephen Vladeck, a law professor at the University of Texas at Austin. The Supreme Court rejected a similar effort by Arizona in 2012 to set immigration enforcement priorities, he said.
“But this is a different Supreme Court,” he added. “If you’re Texas, you might think, ‘Here’s a good opportunity to see if there’s still a majority for that precedent.’” ADN