The Republican Governor of Texas has vowed to appeal yesterday’s federal judge order that the state remove a 1,000-foot row of connected buoys he ordered to be placed in the Rio Grande River, near Eagle Pass, to discourage illegal border crossings.
“Texas will appeal,” said Gov. Greg Abbott in a statement posted on his official website:
The court’s decision today only prolongs President Biden’s refusal to accept that Texas has stepped up to do what he was supposed to be doing for years. This ruling will be overturned by an appeal.
We will continue to use every possible strategy to secure our border. This includes deploying Texas National Guard troops and Department of Public Safety (DPS) troopers, as well as installing strategic barriers.
The battle to defend Texas sovereignty to protect people from the chaos created by President Biden’s open-border policies is just beginning. Texas is ready to fight this battle all the way up to the U.S. Supreme Court.
In a ruling that sided with the Department of Justice which had filed a suit against the buoys, a federal judge in Austin ordered Texas Wednesday to remove the chain of mooring buoys.
The senior judge David Alan Ezra, in the absence of a Fifth District Appeals Court Modification, ordered Texas to remove all marine floating barriers including buoys, anchors, and accessory materials by September 15, in coordination with the Army Corps of Engineers.
Ezra found that the barriers posed a danger to life due to the dangerous conditions that migrants encounter in this stretch, including hidden eddies which can and often do drown swimmers. They also posed a risk to navigation on waters under federal jurisdiction.
He said that “the harm to navigation was clearly evident in the evidence presented” and that “the State of Texas failed to present any credible evidence proving the buoy barrier has curtailed significant illegal immigration across Rio Grande River.”
The judge stated that he was expecting the removal to be easy and quick to complete:
This is not a final decision on the merits of the case, but a preliminary injunction, which is why this Court should act with caution. The Court has ordered that the buoy barriers be removed from the Rio Grande River but moved to the riverbank instead of being completely removed from the river. This is so that they do not hinder or interfere in any way with the navigation of airboats and other shallow-draft crafts along the Rio Grande River.
Abbott announced the program for the first time at a press conference on June 8, where he stated that the goal of the program was to discourage illegal crossings near hotspots of the Rio Grande River.
This strategy, according to the governor, will prevent illegal border crossings by making it harder for people to reach the Texas side on the southern border. The first 1,000 feet would be installed near Eagle Pass.
Operation Lone Star, which is a larger program that mobilizes Texas National Guardsmen and law enforcement to secure the Texas-Mexico border, includes these barriers.
Adjutant-General of Texas, Major General Thomas Suelzer who heads the Texas Military Department praised Governor Abbott’s attention on the border.
The general stated that Texas is fortunate to have a Governor who is unwavering in his efforts to protect the sovereignty of our state, secure our borders, and maintain the rule of law.
He said: “The legislators who sat behind me have passed comprehensive laws that secure the Texas-Mexico Border, and I commend them all for their efforts on this important matter.”
Texas DPS praises the Rio Grande River marine barriers
In a press release dated July 14, the governor expressed his satisfaction with the effectiveness and efficiency of the concertina wire placed along the coast to divert foot traffic from other states.
The governor stated that buoys were placed in the river to stop people from crossing into Texas through the middle of the Rio Grande River.
“Because Texas is doing such an excellent job at stopping people from entering our state, we are seeing a huge increase in people crossing over into New Mexico Arizona, and California.”
Chris Olivarez, Lt. Texas Department of Public Safety, said in the same press release that Texas took action with the buoys as the federal government stepped down from its duty to secure the border between Mexico and Texas.
The lieutenant stated, “This shows that Texas is continuing to take unprecedented actions in the absence of federal government to secure our border.”
“The Governor has done more than any other governor in terms of securing the borders.”
We continue to search for infrastructure and ways to secure the border in order to prevent people from crossing between ports of entry because this still happens and the river is dangerous.
Olivarez stated that there are rules and procedures for entering Texas. Therefore, the barriers shouldn’t be a problem.
He added, “There’s no reason for anyone to want to cross the river.”
They should seek asylum at the port of entry, which is safe, humane, and where they can ask for it, rather than risk their lives crossing the river.