Last week, the Biden administration announced that it will begin eight daily flights to return Haitian illegal immigrants from their makeshift shelters under Texas’ International Bridge. The first flights left Sunday. As many as 14,000 Haitians have arrived in Del Rio with the anticipation that, like thousands of other aliens who preceded them, they’ll be processed and admitted to the U.S. But, the rub — Haiti, recovering from a magnitude 7.2 earthquake that killed more than 2,000 people and damaged more than 100,000 homes, is unwilling to accept more than three flights a day.
Ironically, given that since Biden’s first day in office, he’s abdicated the chief executive’s responsibility to enforce immigration laws that Congress has passed, and previous presidents have signed, the administration’s official statement that returning the Haitians is “about border enforcement” rings hollow.
More probable is that the disconcerting images and videos of thousands of Haitians wading across the Rio Grande, then clustered in squalid, unsanitary conditions — with rumors of more on the way — caught the attention of The Washington Post and The New York Times. Their awareness led to what is, for those publications, a harsh appraisal of the administration’s border crisis mismanagement. After observing the sea of humanity at the bridge, U.S. Rep. Tony Gonzales, a Republican whose district runs along the majority of the Texas border with Mexico, just north of the Rio Grande, said he thought he was in a third world country with literally no border — “it’s just been muddied over.” The administration may have concluded that it couldn’t afford to lose the establishment media’s immigration policy support.
An Associated Press story on the migrant airlift to Haiti predicted that no more than two planes would depart daily, a conclusion that’s probably the most optimistic possible outcome. Whether two or eight flights back to Haiti, Texas would still be left with thousands of Haitian migrants, as well as foreign nationals from 90 countries arriving daily to seek asylum or humanitarian protection. Thousands of Haitians arrived stateside before the earthquake hit.
Nowhere has Biden’s law-shirking been more evident than his feckless open border tolerance that’s gravely harmed several border states, none more so than Texas. To his credit, Gov. Greg Abbott with the Texas Department of Public Safety’s assistance launched “Operation Lone Star” to push back against unchecked illegal immigration, fentanyl trafficking that with Chinese money launderers’ helping hand has earned criminals billions of dollars, and human smuggling that too often leads to children sold into the sex trade. Abbott’s strategy to protect Texans came after his agreement to work with Biden on the closure of six Texas ports of entry to restore immigration enforcement collapsed.
Operation Lone Star will deploy air, ground, marine and tactical border security assets to high threat areas to deny Mexican Cartels and other smugglers the ability to move drugs and people into Texas. In a statement, Abbott said that because of Biden’s neglect, the southern border crisis continues to escalate. Abbott added: “Texas supports legal immigration but will not be an accomplice to the open border policies that cause, rather than prevent, a humanitarian crisis in our state and endanger the lives of Texans. We will surge the resources and law enforcement personnel needed to confront this crisis.” Last week, Abbott signed a $1.8 billion border security bill to increase immigration detention facilities, $750 million of which will be applied to a so-called border barrier that could include temporary chain fences and concrete barriers. This summer, Texas committed $250 million as a down payment for its version of the Trump border wall.
The Constitution, Article IV, Section 4, “guarantees to every state in this union” that “it shall protect each of them against Invasion.” With an anticipated 2 million illegal aliens who will surge the border this year, invasion is the proper word to describe conditions in the Rio Grande Valley, and other Texas entry points. The total illegal crossers include an estimated 40,000 COVID-19 positive aliens. Vaccinations are not mandated for these crossers, who are released into destinations across the nation. And in Texas, a record 10,800 unaccompanied minors entered. August was the second consecutive month that the Department of Homeland Security reported more than 200,000 illegal immigrant encounters.
Once released, aliens become the states’ responsibility — jobs training, housing, transportation, medical care, education — all the necessities that humans need to lead meaningful lives, but which taxpayers must underwrite. If the White House violates the Constitution, and refuses to protect Texas and the other 49 states against foreign incursion, then to safeguard its citizens, individual states must assume the responsibility to defend themselves.
Joe Guzzardi is a Progressives for Immigration Reform analyst who has written about immigration for more than 30 years. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.