By Bethany Blankley (Centre Square)
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said Texas should not allow illegal immigrants into the state, echoing sentiments conservative Texans have held for more than a year.
“What Texas needs to do is just send them [illegal immigrants] across the border,” Governor DeSantis said at a recent press conference in Fort Walton Beach, Florida. “Who cares what the feds say. They are not doing their job.
“Texas shouldn’t let them cross the border to begin with. They just cross the river on foot,” he added. “Nobody Stops Them”
He made his remarks nearly a year after his first trip to Del Rio, Texas. Last July, he met with Texas Governor Greg Abbott and local and state law enforcement to discuss border security efforts and authorized Florida officials to participate in the Border Security Initiative of the state, Operation Lone Star.
But what happened, DeSantis said, was that Texas “let them come and hand them over to the feds, and then the feds released them anyway.”
“A bit of hindsight would be nice,” he added. “And I would send people to help with that if that was what was being done and it really made a difference.
“But to arrest someone, turn them over to Border Patrol, and then Border Patrol release them, I would much rather our people were here to protect Floridians.”
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DeSantis is referring to a common practice by Texas law enforcement that does not stop people from walking on Texas soil after seeing them cross the Rio Grande. It does not refer to OLS operations involving law enforcement pursuing suspected criminals in high-speed car chases or to thwart cartel-run human and drug trafficking.
In Del Rio, McAllen, and other areas on the Texas-Mexico border, for example, The Center Square has repeatedly observed Texas DPS agents positioned at specific locations, waiting for illegal immigrants to cross the river. Once they arrive, officers call Border Patrol and wait with them on the side of a road until Border Patrol agents come to transport them to a nearby processing center.
If the stay-in-Mexico policy were enforced, the majority entering Texas illegally would be deported back to Mexico. Instead, the administration ordered that they be processed and released in the United States with few exceptions. He also works with non-governmental organizations to transport them across the United States. Florida is being sued for the policy, saying it flagrantly violates federal immigration law.
DeSantis said he believed Florida would win the case. He also says that Texas’ approach does not deter illegal immigration.
Abbott says he’s doing what Biden won’t and that Texans are paying to secure the border, which isn’t their responsibility. The Texas Legislature has so far allocated more than $4 billion for border security, something no state legislature has ever done. Texas is also building its own wall, which no other governor or state has ever done in US history. Texas has also sued the administration multiple times and continues to win lawsuits.
While state and local authorities participating in the OLS actively thwart criminal activity, the role of the Texas Military Department has come under significant criticism, prompting Abbott to replace its chief earlier this year.
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Abbott has also received continued criticism from conservatives for transporting illegal immigrants to Washington, DC. Instead, they called on him to close ports of entry, to order members of the Texas National Guard to prevent unlawful entry under a clear commander’s intent, to invoke the American Constitution. and declare an invasion to protect Texas sovereignty, and take other action, which he did not. When asked, his office won’t answer specific questions, but says he’s doing more than any other governor to secure the border.
DeSantis said, “We’re also fighting Biden on the border,” referencing multiple Florida lawsuits. To critics who say ‘you’re not a border state, what do you care’, he said ‘…we have a responsibility to fight back’.
DeSantis will soon sign a bill imposing penalties on those who work with the federal government to transport illegal immigrants to Florida and will soon have access to $12 million to redirect incoming illegal immigrants north, he said. declared.
“If he sends a caravan [of illegal immigrants] in Florida,” DeSantis said of the president, “we’re redirecting it to places like Delaware and other sanctuary states.
While the Biden administration maintains the southern border is closed, record numbers of people from more than 150 countries continue to pour in. Currently en route to the United States is a caravan of nearly 10,000 people who claim to be coming because President Biden has promised to grant them asylum.
“And what is Biden doing?” DeSantis asked. “He fumbles in late-night TV shows? He has to come into the game here and he has to defend the sovereignty of our country. »
The caravan will “absolutely overwhelm” Texas and “many other communities across the United States of America,” he said.
Syndicated with permission from The Center Square.