SUNLAND PARK, New Mexico (Border Report) – Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has drawn the ire of Democrats in two states by placing razor wire on the banks of the Rio Grande facing not Mexico, but New Mexico, to stop illegal migration.
Texas previously installed razor wire on the riverbanks between El Paso and Juarez, Mexico, and in several other border locations downstream. He also surged Texas Army National Guard troops and Texas Department of Public Safety personnel to those areas to discourage illegal crossings from Mexico to Texas.
The new barrier extends from just a few feet from the American canal off West Paisano Drive to the Anapra bridge at Sunland Park. It’s in that area that the river stops being the border with Mexico and runs north into New Mexico.
“Our barriers around El Paso (Texas) forced the migrants crossing illegally to enter into New Mexico. They then enter into El Paso from there. To that end, we are building a barrier on the New Mexico border,” Abbott tweeted on Sunday.
On Tuesday, Texas Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa and New Mexico Democratic Party Chair Jessica Velasquez issued a joint statement decrying the interstate barrier as a political stunt. They called for it to be removed immediately.
“This is the latest Operation Lone Star stunt funded by the working Texas families’ tax dollar that will result in environmental damage, community division and injuries to vulnerable migrants,” Hinojosa and Velasquez said in their statement. “It is clear that Gov. Abbott has no plans of addressing our broken immigration system head on, but instead add more fuel to the Operation Lone Star dumpster fire.”
The Democrats went on to say they believe those who come to America in pursuit of a better life, whether as asylum seekers or not, deserve humane treatment.
“Republicans everywhere think that harmful border stunts will serve as a distraction from the real issues facing working families in our country,” the statement said. “Texas and New Mexico Democrats condemn Abbott’s razor wire fencing along our state borders and call for its removal effective immediately.”
The New Mexico Republican Party responded by supporting the placing of the barrier and emphasizing the need to keep not only migrants, but fentanyl, drug traffickers and terrorists from coming into America.
“It is unbelievable that the Democratic Party of New Mexico would call to remove any barrier from along New Mexico’s southern border when fentanyl, cartels, human traffickers and members of terror watchlists pour through the open border daily,” Republican Party of New Mexico Chairman Steve Pearce said.
He stressed that 7.5 million irregular border crossings have been recorded during the Biden administration and an estimated 1.6 million additional migrants have “gotten away” from border agents during that time.
“We appreciate the Texas governor taking border security seriously, unlike New Mexico’s Democratic delegation, who’ve chosen to ignore the cries for help from our southern border communities entirely,” Pearce added.