Fox LA reporter Bill Melugin took to Twitter on Wednesday to release some of the first images of the new Texas border “barrier” under construction by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott. The move seeks to “cut the feds out of the equation” and arrest illegal immigrants on local charges.
The innovative approach comes as Customs and Border Protection released its June figures of nearly 190,000 illegal immigrants crossing the nation’s southern border last month. The nation has already surpassed one million illegal immigrants for the year, more than all of 2020 combined.
The Biden administration has repeatedly refused to stop or even slow the growing border crisis. Instead, last month Gov. Abbott declared a state of emergency for border counties. The declaration also called out to other states for help.
Numerous states have committed National Guard members or law enforcement to the state’s effort. Florida joined as the first state, with Nebraska, South Dakota and others following. To date, Kentucky has been the only state led by a Democrat governor to join the effort.
In addition to an increased security force, Abbott launched an effort to build the state’s own wall.
A June news release announced “the Governor, Lieutenant Governor [Dan] Patrick, Speaker [Dade] Phelan, and Senator [Jane] Nelson, and Representative [Greg] Bonnen signed a letter during the press conference authorizing the transfer for $250 million as a down payment to launch the construction of the border wall and hire a program manager and contractors.”
In addition to the initial payment, additional future funds were also announced.
“Governor Abbott also noted that the state budget allocates 1.1 billion dollars towards border security — a record for the State of Texas.”
Beyond state funding, Abbott announced the launch of a donation page “where anyone can voluntarily donate to the construction of the border wall.” Donors can personally support the effort at borderwall.texas.gov.
Now the work is starting to move forward. Though only a 1.5 mile start along the Del Rio border, the first stretch of barrier marks a significant change in approach by the Lone Star State. It’s no longer talk. The battle is on.
EXCLUSIVE: We were given access to the beginning construction of Governor Abbott’s promised TX border barrier. The first 1.5 mile stretch is here in Del Rio, yards from Rio Grande. No trespass signs will be added. Migrants will be arrested on state charges if they cross. @FoxNews pic.twitter.com/UbrdY7yhZL
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) July 20, 2021
For a state known for the saying, “Don’t mess with Texas,” it’s stepping up to address a problem the Biden administration will not. Texans know they can’t wait until 2024 to find out if they will get any help. At the current rate, there could be eight million new illegal immigrants in America by then, a population greater than many states.
Instead, Texas is arresting people by the dozens. The next problem for Abbott will be what will happen to those arrested? If 6,000 people are crossing the border each day, where will all these people go?
Abbott is working on plans to return many of the immigrants, but his hope is that increased arrests will slow the number of people attempting to cross the border—at least in his state.