In light of the surge of illegal immigration on the border since President Joe Biden took office last year, citizens have increasingly called for border states to fill in the gap created by his lax policies.
Since courts have generally disallowed states from enforcing immigration law, one of the most prominent solutions proposed now is to declare an invasion at the border.
Article I, Section 10, Clause 3 of the U.S. Constitution allows for states to repel an invasion themselves by utilizing their state guards. Declaring an invasion would also allow for governors to enter into an interstate compact to secure the border.
While Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has yet to take that action, several Texas counties that have experienced the brutal reality of open borders are making moves of their own.
On Tuesday, representatives from several counties gathered in Brackettville, the county seat of Kinney County where local law enforcement documented more than 4,000 illegal aliens who avoided apprehension by U.S. Border Patrol in May of 2022 alone. (Texas Scorecard live-streamed the event. Watch the video here or at the end of this article.)
Kinney County Judge Tully Shahan put the bulk of the blame on the Biden administration.
“America doesn’t know what’s happening here. And we’re here to try to change that,” said Shahan while highlighting that county law enforcement prevented more than 67 smuggling attempts just last month.
“We don’t want to lose America. The Biden administration won’t do a thing to stop this. They could stop it now. They don’t have the guts, but they have a plan. Their plan is to keep bringing them in with open borders. If we keep our open borders, we’re not going to have a nation.”
Kinney County is not the only county considering declaring an invasion on the border, with Goliad, Uvalde, Val Verde, Terrell, and Zavala county representatives also indicating they would likely do so in the coming days.
Don McLaughlin, the mayor of nearby Uvalde, underscored the importance of counties taking action even if they don’t share a border with Mexico.
“We’re about 63 miles to 70 miles from the border,” said McLaughlin. “What we deal with constantly is the coyotes bringing people through our community.”
“Our citizens are having to deal with it,” he added.
While many of the sheriffs and county officials at the event expressed appreciation for Gov. Greg Abbott having increased state law enforcement presence and money to the border as part of his Operation Lone Star effort, they also called on him to do more..
U.S. Rep. Chip Roy articulated this sentiment when addressing the crowd.
“The governor is giving resources,” said Roy, referencing razor wires and DPS officers placed along the Rio Grande. “But guess what, it doesn’t work in the end if the federal government refuses to enforce the laws in the United States.”
“We should declare an invasion. We should, as Texas, turn people away and do what is necessary to secure our communities because [we] support our communities,” he added.
Ken Cuccinelli, the former attorney general of Virginia and a senior fellow with the Center for Renewing America, said:
“I’ve heard a lot of the positive things Gov. Abbott has done to support desperate communities, desperate communities across Texas and not just at the border. That’s been critical and necessary help. But it doesn’t change the fact that Texas and America are being invaded.”
Attendees acknowledged that the declaration passed by the counties is largely symbolic, as they cannot take action without the governor.
As of publishing, Abbott’s office did not respond to request for comment.
The Republican Party of Texas has also recently called for the state to declare the surge as an invasion and defend its borders in the absence of federal action.