Texas Gov. Greg Abbott tweeted on Oct. 3: "[The] Texas National Guard is gearing up at the border for increased caravans attempting to cross the border caused by [President Joe] Biden's open border policy. They are working with the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) to seal surge locations at the border and arrest trespassers."
The governor's spokeswoman, Renae Eze, told the Washington Examiner the next day that Texas has deployed thousands of guard members and DPS troopers to the border over the past seven months. However, she refused to disclose how many are on border duties.
According to a DPS official, more than 1,000 officers from the department were sent to Del Rio, Texas in late September after 15,000 Haitian migrants reached the city.
Eze writes in a subsequent email: "When the recent caravan of … Haitian migrants crossed into Del Rio, Gov. Abbott surged additional law enforcement personnel to the region. [He also] directed the [national guard] and DPS to create a steel barrier with hundreds of their vehicles and Humvees to deter further crossings."
Abbott mentioned the state's preparations for the influx of Haitian migrants during a Sept. 29 interview on the "Clay Travis and Buck Sexton Show."
"We have multiple reports about different caravans coming to different regions across the border," he said at the time.
Abbott told the hosts that the national guard and DPS lining up their armed vehicles where people cross had been effective in deterring Haitians attempting to cross. "We need to obviously first identify the exact location [where migrants cross.] Then second, we will identify where we will set up these barricades. This successful strategy will be utilized for other caravans headed towards our southern border." (Related: Breitbart: Numbers swell overnight to 12k migrants detained under border bridge in Texas.)
President Joe Biden has limited the arrest powers of Border Patrol and ICE, resulting in fewer deportations and more illegal immigrants being released into the United States. The Biden administration's espousal of the "catch-and-release" scheme has inadvertently made illegal immigration a more attractive prospect.
Abbott criticizes Biden's move in an interview. He says: "I find despicable the attack on Border Patrol officers by the Biden administration. You have the commander-in-chief attacking his own officers who are on the front lines doing their best to safeguard our border. It is wrong for the president to attack them."
To address this, Abbott has issued an order – based on federal immigration laws – mandating the arrest of illegal immigrants. He explains: "It's a violation of law when you do come across the border. [We] stepped up and created our own court system in south Texas where we are arresting and processing and then jailing people who are coming across the border for criminal trespass."
Abbott adds: "Because I declared a disaster in this region along the border, it immediately elevates the time in jail and the penalties for trespass in the state of Texas. [It] turns into a six-month to a year [imprisonment] penalty. [We] opened up thousands of jail cells where we now have more than a thousand people behind bars who crossed … the border illegally and trespass on areas in the state." (Related: Texas GOP lawmaker goes there, calls on Gov. Abbott to disregard hapless Biden regime and take control of border himself.)
According to the governor, illegal immigrants arrested by state law enforcement have to be turned over to the federal government. "When Trump was [president], the federal officials would not use catch-and-release. However, under the Biden presidency they use catch-and-release," he says.
The governor also notes that no one from the Biden administration has actively offered help to alleviate the situation in Texas. "They have never even talked to us. None offered … help or any assistance. They never even offered any challenge to us, which is good because it means we are able to step up and do more than has ever been done … to prevent these people from coming in," Abbott says.
Abbott ultimately slams the federal government for failing to secure the southern border. "This is a complete dereliction of duty by the Biden administration. They are acting contrary to the constitutional command for them to secure the border, and I hope Congress holds this administration accountable," he says.
OpenBorders.news has more news about the ongoing border crisis in Texas.