Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s recent executive order on immigration and false border security rhetoric could lead to acts of racially driven violence – and resonate dangerously close to the so-called “show me your papers” laws, a group of Democrats and immigration activists said during a press call Wednesday.
Abbott on July 7 issued an executive order authorizing the Texas National Guard and the Texas Department of Public Safety to return to the ports of entry migrants they apprehend for illegally crossing the border. Although the executive order doesn’t declare an invasion, it does claim that the Biden administration has failed to protect the state against one.
Mario Carrillo, campaigns manager for America’s Voice, called the executive order a political stunt and “the most dangerous one yet.”
America’s Voice, the national immigration advocacy organization, organized the press call which included U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar, D-El Paso; Antonio Arellano of the youth voting organization NextGen America; former Austin councilman and District 35 congressional candidate Greg Casar; and America’s Voice political director Zachary Mueller.
“I am very, very concerned for communities like mine that we will see more acts of violence committed against them,” Escobar said, recalling the El Paso mass shooting of Aug. 3, 2019, where 23 people were killed. The alleged gunman in the shooting drove 10 hours to El Paso to “stop the Hispanic invasion of Texas.”
‘Show me your papers’
John Wittman, a former Abbott spokesman, told Newsweek that the governor is frustrated by federal inaction.
“The Biden administration has had ample opportunity to step up and do their job and secure the border,” Wittman told Newsweek, “but the governor has run out of patience.”
In a statement announcing the executive order July 7, Abbott said the state is working to secure the southern border amid what he called Biden’s open border policies.
“While President Biden refuses to do his job and enforce the immigration laws enacted by Congress, the State of Texas is once again stepping up and taking unprecedented action to protect Americans and secure our southern border,” Abbott said in the statement.
By Cindy Ramirez
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