(Patriot.Buzz) – Positioning the state in the vanguard of protecting the Southern Border, Texas state legislators this week passed a bill that would significantly expand the state’s authority in dealing with illegal aliens entering the United States.
The legislation allows Texas to independently arrest, imprison, and potentially deport individuals who illegally cross into the U.S. from Mexico outside of designated legal entry points.
The bill, which has been a subject of intense debate, criminalizes the act of entering the U.S. without proper legal authorization, specifically targeting those who do so between official ports of entry along the Mexican border.
Moreover, it empowers state and local law enforcement agencies to detain individuals suspected of this new state-level offense. Subsequently, local judiciary authorities could issue orders to deport these detainees.
This legislative action saw the Texas House of Representatives endorse the bill following its approval by the Texas Senate last week. Republican Representative David Spiller voiced strong support for the measure, stating to The Wall Street Journal, “Texas has the right, authority and ability to protect its borders.”
Contrastingly, Republican Senator Brian Birdwell, who chairs the Texas Senate Committee on Border Security, notably opposed the bill despite having authored several earlier drafts. Birdwell expressed concerns about the bill’s constitutional implications, emphasizing that deportation orders are a federal prerogative. He cautioned against setting a dangerous precedent that undermines adherence to the Constitution.
Adding to the controversy, over two dozen former immigration judges from across 11 states, appointed by both Republican and Democrat administrations, penned an open letter vehemently opposing the bill. They argued that it contravenes constitutional principles and due process rights.
The letter highlighted the potential long-term consequences of such a law, stating, “The proposed law should offend those who treasure our constitutional protections. And legislators should consider the long-term repercussions of their essentially proclaiming that the Constitution, federal law and due process can simply be ignored.”