The Biden administration’s open border policy has led to a record number of illegal immigrants entering the United States.
Lawmakers in Texas, a state that borders Mexico, decided to take matters into their own hands this week and passed a bill that will deter immigrants from entering the country illegally.
The Texas House of Representatives approved immigration bills Tuesday that would appropriate more than $1.5 billion for additional border barriers and make illegally crossing the Texas-Mexico border a state crime.https://t.co/Xf7sDhsJXF
— ABC 7 Amarillo (@ABC7Amarillo) November 15, 2023
The state legislature passed a bill that will allow the state to arrest, imprison, and possibly deport migrants who illegally enter the United States.
The bill makes it a state crime for anyone without legal authorization to be in the U.S. to enter from Mexico in between legal ports of entry.
It would also allow state and local police to arrest people who are suspected of violating this law, and local judges could then order those people to be deported.
The Texas House passed the bill on Tuesday, and the Texas Senate passed the bill last week.
“Texas has the right, authority and ability to protect its borders,” Republican state Rep. David Spiller told The Wall Street Journal.
The Texas House has delivered on our promise to pass the strongest border security bill in the nation. I’m proud to lead the charge on this landmark legislation as it will be sent to Governor @GregAbbott_TX ‘s desk. #txlege pic.twitter.com/tuevffYm45
— David Spiller (@DavidSpillerTX) November 15, 2023
However, Republican state Sen. Brian Birdwell, who chairs the Texas Senate Commitee on Border Security, voted against the bill despite writing multiple previous versions of it.
He told the Journal that legislators “are setting a terrible precedent for the future by invalidating our obedience and faithfulness to the Constitution,” saying that only the federal government is permitted to order deportations.
Last week, more than two dozen former immigration judges, who served in 11 states and were appointed by both Republican and Democrat administrations, signed an open letter opposing the bill as unconstitutional.
“The proposed law should offend those who treasure our constitutional protections,” the letter states. “And legislators should consider the long-term repercussions of their essentially proclaiming that the Constitution, federal law and due process can simply be ignored.”