Texas, Feds at Odds on Southern Border

Southern Border
Southern Border | Image by P.A.12/Shutterstock

While Texas law enforcement agencies work to deter the incursion of unlawful migrants, some federal agents appear to be circumventing state border security measures.

As reported by The Dallas Express, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has begun deploying new preventative measures to address the ongoing crisis at the southern border, including buoy barriers in the Rio Grande and razor wire along the shore.

A video circulating on social media, however, apparently shows a federal border security agent cutting through this razor wire.

While Texas law enforcement officials have been focused on repelling unlawful migrants back into Mexico, some have come to view federal agents as a source of safe haven for people entering the country illegally.

Another video posted on social media by Todd Bensman, a fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies, shows a group of migrants that has just crossed the river.

“This illegal immigrant crowd did a looong [sic] end run around the Texas Hold The Line razor wire and got themselves to Biden’s Border patrol – the ‘good ones’ – who will quickly process them all into America forever,” he claimed.

In another tweet, Bensman related, “Still soaking wet illegal immigrants just turned back to Mexico by @GregAbbott_TX’s Hold the Line operations tell me they’re going off to find friendlier Biden Border Patrol agents who are quickly freeing all their friends and relatives into America.”

Communities along the border are reportedly bearing the brunt of this three-way tug-of-war between state and federal law enforcement officials and unlawful migrants.

Texas Rep. Eddie Morales (D-Eagle Pass) recently sent Gov. Abbott a letter calling attention to the land owners and businessmen along the border who have suffered significant financial losses due to the crisis.

“Our communities have been on the forefront of the migrant crisis and state and local government have been collaborative in trying to combat the increase in migrant traffic,” Morales explained in a tweet. “However, it is coming to a crossroads.”

“I have been a cautious supporter of Operation Lone Star for the past two years—and I am confident to say the operation has had substantial support from residents along the border,” he continued. “However, the presence of DPS running operations on private property and migrants crossing those properties, have caused significant damage that, without compensation, is losing the support of Texans who believe in the importance of border security.”

In his letter to Gov. Abbott, Morales detailed the concerns of two of his constituents who owned property along the border. One of them, a pecan orchard owner, reported that DPS had effectively “taken over” the entirety of his orchard, and he claimed that he had suffered the loss of 70% of his trees due to the dust from patrol vehicles.

He estimated a loss of roughly $1,234,200 in revenue. In addition, he claimed he had to invest $11,360 for road and infrastructure maintenance and $17,780 for waterline repair due to damages from increased law enforcement vehicle traffic.

Similarly, a homeowner in Eagle Pass said that migrants had caused thousands of dollars worth of damage to fencing along his property, and law enforcement vehicles had caused $35,508 worth of damage to his roads and driveway.

Morales said that such incidents of property damage were “prevalent and causing frustration among residents who otherwise strongly support Operation Lone Star.”

“I believe it is time to accept that help from the Federal Government is not coming and it is incumbent upon the state to help fellow Texans along the border,” Morales said in the letter to Abbott.

“For the well-being of border communities and to protect our small businesses, I kindly ask your full consideration of putting the Border Compensation Fund as an emergency item for any upcoming Special Sessions that may be called, and I urge a collaborative effort in addressing border security,” he concluded.

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