New bill would block feds from tearing down Texas border defenses



(The Center Square) – As the border battle between the states and federal government intensifies, one U.S. senator has introduced a bill to stop the Biden administration from cutting Texas’ concertina wire border defense.

Sen. J.D. Vance, R-Ohio, introduced the “State Border Security Act” Thursday, which would prevent federal agents from “dismantling, removing, destroying” border barriers installed by the states.

This is the latest development on the escalating tension between Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and President Joe Biden over the southern border. Abbott has said Texas will defend the border since Biden is not doing enough to stop the flow of illegal immigration.

More than 10 million illegal immigrants have entered the U.S. since Biden took office, which is more than the population of nearly 40 states.

In an ongoing legal dispute, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled this week that federal border agents could remove border wire installed by the state of Texas in Eagle Pass.

“The Supreme Court gave Joe Biden a green light to cut down barriers put in place by the State of Texas,” Vance said. “My bill would codify the right of every state along the U.S.-Mexico border to defend its own territory. If Joe Biden refuses to take action, let the states get the job done.”

Many online have said the Supreme Court blocked Texas from putting up the wire, but the ruling actually only says that the federal government is entitled to take it down. Texas’ backers say Texas is still able to put up the wire.

In response to the ruling, Abbott posted an open letter to the nation about Texas’ “constitutional right to self-defense.”

From the letter:

“The Executive Branch of the United States has a constitutional duty to enforce federal laws protecting States, including immigration laws on the books right now,” the statement reads. “President Biden has instructed his agencies to ignore federal statutes that mandate the detention of illegal immigrants. The failure of the Biden Administration to fulfill the duties imposed by Article IV, § 4 has triggered Article I, § 10, Clause 3, which reserves to this State the right of self-defense. For these reasons, I have already declared an invasion under Article I, § 10, Clause 3 to invoke Texas’s constitutional authority to defend and protect itself. That authority is the supreme law of the land and supersedes any federal statutes to the contrary.”

But Abbott is not alone in this standoff. Dozens of state leaders and even Democratic mayors have complained of the mass of illegal migration. Many of the illegal migrants head north for Democrat-run sanctuary cities New York, Chicago and Denver.

On Thursday, Arkansas Gov. Sarah Huckabee Sanders shared Abbot’s open letter on X with a pledge to stand with Texas.

“If President Biden won’t defend us, states will have to defend themselves,” she wrote. “Arkansas stands with Texas.”

Some Democrats have been vocal against Abbott and his wire as well as his practice of busing migrants to sanctuary cities. One Congressional Democrat has called on the president to federalize the Texas National Guard if Abbott does not comply.

Vance’s office pointed out an exception in the legislation that allows for the removal of border wire if it has “the intention of facilitating, rather than deterring, illegal immigration,” and said the bill would “allow the Attorney General to seek injunctive relief if clear evidence demonstrates a state government constructed protective fencing with the intention of facilitating illegal immigration.”

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