GOP leaders in a number of Texas border counties have spoken out saying that the illegal immigration chaos is an “invasion” in their communities. They are calling on the governor of Texas to declare a state of emergency and immediately begin deportations.
The counties in focus are Uvalde, Terrell, Kinney, and Goliad. Their officials came together for a press conference this week, and they announced that emergency declarations would be coming soon to focus attention on the many difficulties that are arising because of the federal government’s inability to secure the border.
“I am here to let you know that the invasion is real. We are here to protect the sovereignty of our nation, not just the border of Texas,” Terrell County Judge Dale Lynn Carruthers said.
Together, the officials reported that there has been property damage, increased crime, and a rising flow of both drugs and human trafficking in their communities. They are not satisfied with President Biden’s handling of the crisis they face, and they are demanding that Texas step up and enforce the federal immigration law. They stated that this is necessary because of the absence of federal law enforcement.
Kinney County released a press statement that said local law enforcement has prevented more than 67 smuggling attempts along county roads. They have also encountered 4,000 illegal aliens who “avoided apprehension by Border Patrol and whose whereabouts are currently unknown.”
Texas officials pointed out that since January of 2021, more than 3.2 million migrants have been apprehended by local law enforcement after they cross the border illegally. The estimate is that more than 800,000 have gotten past Border Patrol and have now disappeared into the country.
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The mayor of Uvalde, Don McLaughlin, described the influx of pedophiles, convicted murderers, drug dealers, and gang members in his community.
“It’s a nightmare. With the tragedy that we just had, our kids are going to be going back to school in the next 45 days or so, and here we’re going to start again with the bailouts and so forth. It needs to stop. We need to make them come across the right way, so we know who they are and where they’re going,” he said.
Judge Mike Bennett of Goliad County told the press that there’s been an increase in stolen cars and property damage reported over the last two years. He talked about how more and more of his county’s resources have to be directed toward law enforcement now.
Tully Shahan, the Kinney County Judge said, “The Biden administration won’t do a thing about it. We’re in over our head. We need help and we need for Attorney General Ken Paxton and our governor to adopt an invasion under its definition in the Constitution. Adopt that invasion and let’s move forward.”
The county officials are relying on Article IV, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution and Article 4, Section 7 of the Texas Constitution. This allows Texas to declare an “invasion” of the country, and they are urging Governor Abbott to do likewise and “take necessary actions to preserve and protect the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Texas.”
This is a strategy that has already been put forward by conservative activists including Ken Cuccinelli, a former Trump administration official. He advised the county officials and spoke at the press conference.
He said that using the “self-help provision of the Constitution to declare an invasion … gives the governor, decided similarly, the authority to repeal that invasion.”
Governor Abbott declared that “all strategies remain on the table” to confront the border crisis.