As Texas finds new and creative ways to protect its border, the White House is seeking to interfere.
From CNN. Texas authorities arrested migrants at Shelby Park in Eagle Pass, Texas, late Wednesday evening and charged them with criminal trespassing, marking the first arrests of migrants since the state took control of the area at the US-Mexico border last week, an official said.
The arrests were announced by Lt. Chris Olivarez at the Texas Department of Public Safety on social media, where he also posted videos on X showing migrants being handcuffed and taken away by authorities.
Single adult migrant men and women were taken into state custody, while migrant families and children were transferred to US Border Patrol, Olivarez said. …
Migrants arrested for criminal trespassing first face the state charge before they are transferred to US Border Patrol officials, Olivarez said. The arrests took place at Shelby Park and private lands where the landowner granted the state authority to make arrests, Olivarez explained.
The arrests come as tensions flare between Texas and federal officials over the ongoing migrant surge at the US-Mexico border.
The Biden administration informed state officials that they had until the end of Wednesday to stop blocking the US Border Patrol’s access to a 2.5 mile stretch along the US-Mexico border, according to a letter from the Department of Homeland Security obtained exclusively by CNN over the weekend.
The blocked-off area includes the location where a woman and two children drowned in the Rio Grande near Shelby Park last week. The deaths have augmented the rift between Texas and federal officials over who has jurisdiction in that portion of the Rio Grande area and how to tackle the migrant crisis.
In the letter to Texas’ Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton, DHS said the state’s actions “have impeded operations” and are unconstitutional. The letter also cited the deaths — among the latest in the ongoing migrant crisis — near the park where state authorities have erected fencing and kept out federal agents.
By the end of Wednesday, the DHS warned it would “refer the matter to the Department of Justice for appropriate action and consider all other options available to restore Border Patrol’s access to the border” if Texas doesn’t confirm it will “cease and desist its efforts to block Border Patrol’s access in and around the Shelby Park area and remove all barriers to access to the U.S.-Mexico border,” the letter states. …
Paxton on Wednesday responded to federal officials, saying “Texas will not surrender,” in a statement issued by his office.
In a three-page letter, Paxton claimed Texas has constitutional authority to defend its territory, an authority he plans to continue fighting for in the courts, according to the letter. …
The polarizing issue made its way to the US Supreme Court when the Biden administration requested it to intervene after Texas sued over Border Patrol agents’ practice of removing razor wire put in place by the state along a portion of the border near Eagle Pass.
An appeals court ordered the agents to stop removing the wire while legal challenges play out, and the administration has asked the high court to step in on an emergency basis to wipe that order. …
Meanwhile, the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals said Wednesday it will rehear a case in which it had initially upheld a lower court’s order directing the state of Texas to remove its border buoys from the Rio Grande. The floating border barriers are expected to stay in the river pending the outcome of the en banc rehearing. Oral arguments in that case are expected to begin in May. …
Is Texas right to keep Border Patrol agents from Eagle Pass? Share your thoughts and prayers below.
(Excerpt from CNN. Photo Credit: Greg Bulla on Unsplash)