Texas Gov. Greg Abbott returned fire on Tuesday after a federal judge shutdown an executive order he issued that was intended to stop illegal immigrants from spreading coronavirus.
The order called for state troopers to stop drivers suspected of carrying illegal immigrants – something which the Biden administration has apparently frowned upon.
“The Court’s recent order is temporary and based on limited evidence,” the statement said. “We look forward to providing the Court with the evidence to support the Governor’s Executive Order to protect Texans.”
“The Biden Administration has knowingly — and willfully — released COVID-19 positive migrants into Texas communities,” the statement continued, “risking the potential exposure and infection of Texas residents. The Governor’s Executive Order attempts to prevent the Biden Administration from spreading COVID-19 into Texas and protect the health and safety of Texans.”
U.S. District Judge Kathleen Cardone in El Paso granted a request by the Justice Department for a temporary restraining order against Abbott’s move. The decision was seen as an initial victory for the Biden administration.
Biden’s Justice Department sued Abbott and Texas last Friday, saying his order interferes with the federal government’s ability to deal with immigration. It followed U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland’s threat of legal action Thursday after the governor’s order.
Garland told Abbott to “immediately rescind” the executive order, which he deemed “both dangerous and unlawful.”
Cardone’s next step is deciding if the move by Texas is constitutional, according to the Texas Tribune.
In Cardone’s order, she noted the Justice Department was likely to prevail on its claim that the order signed by Abbott violates the Constitution’s Supremacy Clause because it conflicts with federal immigration law and “directly regulates the federal government’s operations.”
“The Executive Order causes irreparable injury to the United States and to individuals the United States is charged with protecting, jeopardizing the health and safety of non-citizens in federal custody, risking the safety of federal law enforcement personnel and their families, and exacerbating the spread of COVID-19,” the judge stated.
Abbott’s order, issued last Wednesday, had authorized Texas’ growing presence of state troopers along the border to “stop any vehicle upon reasonable suspicion” that it transports migrants. Troopers could then reroute vehicles back to their point of origin or impound them.
Abbott defended his order as necessary in preventing the spread of COVID-19 in his state.
Last month, Fox News reported that coronavirus cases among migrants in the Rio Grande Valley section of the southern border surged 900%.
President Joe Biden responded Tuesday to a question about the influx of illegal immigrants pouring over the border without being tested for COVID-19.
Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked Biden about the number of migrants coming into the country as the administration claims to be focusing on controlling the spread of the new delta variant of the coronavirus.
“You just said there is no wall high enough and no ocean wide enough to protect us from the virus. So what is the thinking behind letting untested and unvaccinated migrants cross the southern border into U.S. cities in record numbers?” asked Doocy.
Biden responded, “We have not withdrawn the order that is sometimes critical, or criticized, saying that unvaccinated people should … go back across the border. But unaccompanied children is a different story … That’s the most humane thing to do, is to test them and to treat them and not send them back alone.”
Border Patrol Union president Brandon Judd said that Border Patrol has to assume that everyone who they take into custody might have the virus. He also mentioned that they’ve had agents die from COVID-19.
Judd said, “We’re going to exceed 200,000 apprehensions in the month of July. 40% of those people were released into the United States to spread throughout our communities, a lot of whom very well could have COVID.”
“You got the problem of the COVID-19 spread. You’ve also got the problem of we just don’t have… we can’t put enough of our agents on the line to actually protect the border. This is a huge crisis and it keeps getting worse day by day.”
Author: Bryce Carlson