Abbott Braces for Supreme Court Battle as DOJ Threatens Lawsuit Over Texas Immigration Law
Texas’s Republican governor, Greg Abbott, adopted a new anti-illegal immigration law this month, and the Biden administration threatened to sue the state on Thursday. However, Abbott says he is ready to fight the state to the Supreme Court.
This month, Abbott signed SB 4, a bill that gives state judges the authority to order the expulsion of illegal immigrants and permits law enforcement to make arrests of them.
The Department of Justice states in a letter to Abbott that it will “pursue all appropriate legal remedies to ensure that Texas does not interfere with the functions of the federal government.” The letter was first made public by the Houston Chronicle.
Citing a 2012 Supreme Court decision, U.S. v. Arizona, which determined that the federal government has the authority to execute immigration law, the letter claims that the statute “intrudes into a field that is occupied by the federal government and is preempted,” as reported by the source.
Abbott’s office stated in a statement to Fox News Digital that Texas was ready to defend the legislation before the country’s top court.
“Texas is prepared to take this fight to the U.S. Supreme Court to protect Texans and Americans from President Biden’s open border policies,” spokesperson Renae Eze stated. “Texas is now on its own due to President Biden’s reckless and purposeful inaction at our southern border. As the President refuses to enforce federal immigration rules, Governor Abbott signed Senate Bill 4 into law last week to assist in halting the flood of illegal immigrants entering Texas.
Texas has been at the forefront of the border’s illegal immigration crisis, which has prompted Abbott and the Biden administration to engage in a judicial struggle. While the Biden administration has accused Abbott of pushing cruel border policies, Abbott has countered by accusing the government of failing to protect the border.
A federal appeals court last week temporarily barred the Biden administration from removing the razor wire that Texas had installed earlier in the year. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals prohibited the Biden administration from damaging, demolishing, or otherwise interfering with Texas’s [concertina wire] fence in the vicinity of Eagle Pass, Texas, unless it is for a medical emergency. The state had sued in October and had been rejected by a federal judge.
In a related case, Texas was sued by the DOJ for placing buoys in the Rio Grande to prevent unauthorized crossings. The DOJ and humanitarian organizations contend that the barrier endangers public safety, but Texas claims the buoys are meant to save lives by keeping people out of the river.
Abbott’s efforts to transport migrants to “sanctuary” areas like Chicago and New York City, which he claims are essential to alleviate overburdened border communities, have also drawn criticism from the White House.
“We feel that the policies and political antics of Governor Abbott are unsafe, not only for the residents of Texas but also for our CBP, our local law enforcement officials who are attempting to carry out their duties. It dehumanizes and demonizes immigrants, and it puts them in danger. His political stunts accomplish that, as stated by White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre last week.
The possibility of a fresh lawsuit arises as record numbers are crossing the border once more. This week, Fox News reported that since December 1, there had been over 250,000 migrant interactions at the southern border, including over 35,000 over the four-day Christmas weekend.
Meanwhile, on Wednesday, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador met with a group from the Biden administration that included Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas to talk about the hemispheric migration situation.