Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott plans to close shelters housing approximately 4,500 unaccompanied migrant children by Aug. 31, according to a report on Monday.
“The federal government must solve the federal problem caused by the Biden administration’s disastrous open-border policies,” Abbott wrote to Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra, according to a Politico report.
“Texas will not be commandeered into federal government service,” the letter added.
Abbott also said, “The federal government cannot force a state to do the federal government’s job.”
The report said, “Under Abbott’s plan, 52 shelters across the state would be forced to halt care for unaccompanied minors or be stripped of the licenses currently needed to remain open.”
The Politico report follows a series of new announcements from Texas about its efforts to address the growing immigration crisis.
“President Biden’s open-border policies have paved the way for dangerous gangs and cartels, human traffickers, and deadly drugs like fentanyl to pour into our communities,” Abbott said.
“Meanwhile, landowners along the border are seeing their property damaged and vandalized on a daily basis while the Biden Administration does nothing to protect them. Texas continues to step up to confront the border crisis in the federal government’s absence, but more must be done.
“By declaring a state of disaster in these counties, Texas will have more resources and strategies at our disposal to protect landowners and enforce all federal and state laws to combat criminal activities stemming from the border crisis. Working together with local law enforcement, the state will continue to take robust and meaningful action to keep our communities safe.”
The declaration announcement said, “The Governor is authorizing the use of all necessary and available state and local resources to protect landowners in these counties from trespassers and the damage they cause to private property.”
The declaration also made it clear that the state has the authority to make arrests of illegal immigrants and to discontinue the license of child care facilities detaining illegal immigrant children.
“The Governor has also directed the Texas Department of Public Safety to enforce all federal and state criminal laws, including criminal trespassing, smuggling, and human trafficking. The Governor directed the Texas Health and Human Services Commission to take all necessary steps to discontinue state licensure of any child care facility under a contract with the federal government that shelters or detains unlawful immigrants.”
Former President Donald Trump also announced earlier in June that he will travel to the southern border of Texas after accepting Abbott’s invitation.
“I have accepted the invitation of Texas Governor Greg Abbott to join him on an official visit to our Nation’s decimated Southern Border,” Trump announced in a message posted to his Telegram account. He said the visit will take place on June 30.
In his announcement, Trump criticized the Biden administration and lamented the conditions at the border.
“The Biden Administration inherited from me the strongest, safest, and most secure border in U.S history and in mere weeks they turned it into the single worst border crisis in U.S history. It’s an unmitigated disaster zone,” Trump wrote.
“We went from detain-and-remove to catch-and-release. We went from having border security that was the envy of the world to a lawless border that is now pitied around the world. Biden and Harris have handed control of our border over to cartels, criminals, and coyotes,” he said.
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