Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) shut down six ports of entry from Mexico into the United States to curb a surge in illegal migrants crossing over the border.
“The sheer negligence of the Biden Administration to do their job and secure the border is appalling. I have directed the Department of Public Safety and the Texas National Guard to surge personnel and vehicles to shut down six points of entry along the southern border to stop these caravans from overrunning our state,” Abbott said in a statement Thursday.
Abbott’s drastic action came after drone footage captured by Fox News showed the number of migrants waiting for processing in Del Rio, Texas, doubled overnight from 4,200 to 8,000 people.
“The border crisis is so dire that the U.S. Customs and Border Protection is requesting our help as their agents are overwhelmed by the chaos. Unlike President Biden, the State of Texas remains committed to securing our border and protecting Americans,” Abbott continued.
NEW: Another stunning image from our @FoxNews drone team showing the situation at the international bridge in Del Rio, TX, where a law enforcement source tells me there are more than 8,000 migrants waiting to be processed by Border Patrol after crossing illegally into the U.S. pic.twitter.com/opey70NBNt
— Bill Melugin (@BillFOXLA) September 16, 2021
According to Abbott, the Biden administration initially asked Texas to help in closing the border amid the surge of illegal migrants, but the White House reversed itself hours later.
“Six hours after U.S. Customs and Border Protection requested help from Texas to close ports of entry and secure the border, the Biden Administration has now flip-flopped to a different strategy that abandons border security and instead makes it easier for people to cross illegally and for cartels to exploit the border,” Abbott said in another statement Thursday. “The Biden Administration is in complete disarray and is handling the border crisis as badly as the evacuation from Afghanistan. I have directed the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas National Guard to maintain their presence at and around ports of entry to deter crossings.”
Illegal immigration has surged since Biden won the election last year in November. Last month, the number of illegal immigrants crossing into the U.S. numbered over 200,000, the second consecutive month to hit over that benchmark. The roughly 208,000 illegal immigrants that crossed into the United States in August is an over 300% increase in illegal immigration over August 2020.
The Biden administration has struggled to come up with an answer to the ongoing border crisis, which has taken a back seat in recent weeks to the Biden administration’s chaotic withdrawal of U.S. troops from Afghanistan.
The Supreme Court ordered the Biden administration to reinstate former President Donald Trump’s “Remain in Mexico” policy that Biden had attempted to scrap during his first days in office. As The Daily Wire reported:
The “Remain in Mexico” policy forced migrants seeking asylum in the United States to wait south of the border until their case could be heard by an immigration court. The Biden administration has, instead, reversed to a more lenient policy, allowing migrants seeking asylum to stay in the United States once given a court date, creating the risk that migrants may never return to immigration court or a processing facility.
Under the Obama administration, a similar policy was known, colloquially, as “catch-and-release.”
The end of “Remain in Mexico” is often cited as one of the primary reasons for the massive uptick in illegal immigrant encounters along the southern border. Without the threat of staying south of the U.S.-Mexico border until an asylum claim can be processed, many migrants who may have held off under the Trump administration are presenting themselves at the border under Biden. As a result, United States Customs and Border Protection encountered more than a million illegal immigrants at the southern border in the first half of 2021.