Border Insecurity

A humanitarian and national security crisis is building on the border between Texas and Mexico, with thousands of illegal aliens — many of them unaccompanied children — flooding across. Not only is the Obama Administration doing nothing about it, but a report at Breitbart Texas indicates that House Speaker Joe Straus is standing in the way of the Lone Star State being able to address the problem.

Has your state representative heard from you? And has Joe Straus heard from your state rep? The Texas Capitol switchboard is 512-463-4630.
In an article by Bob Price, the press secretary for Gov. Rick Perry said that Straus has not yet signed on to a letter authorizing the Department of Public Safety to “conduct a border surge operation in the coming months. This letter is awaiting approval from Speaker Straus.”

(Under state law, only the Legislative Budget Board — acting with a written directive from the governor, lieutenant governor and speaker — can reallocate funds for border security out of the current budget without a special session of the Legislature.)

A San Antonio Express News article last month described border security plans as “stalled” because of Straus, noting he is a “snag” in the plans of other Texas elected officials.

Despite being nominally a Republican, Straus’ power base derives from the liberal wing of the Democratic Party and is supported by weak-kneed GOP House members afraid of challenging the Austin lobby. Some “conservative” legislators have been down-talking a challenge to Straus, as they seek to curry favor with the incumbent and goodies from the crony-lobby.

Meanwhile, the Republican Lt. Gov. nominee, Sen. Dan Patrick, is calling for emergency funding out of available revenues to be allocated for tighter border security. State Rep. Jeff Leach of Collin County today reported that there has been an “unprecedented wave of over 35,000 illegal crossings each month, bringing with it a dangerous influx of illegal drugs, violence and infectious disease.”

In addition, Leach wrote, there have been more than “47,000 … unaccompanied minors” among the apprehended.

The leadership of the near-GOP-supermajority in the Texas House sitting inactively alongside the Obama Administration during this growing crisis.

By not letting Texas’ DPS take action on the border, Straus — and, by extension, his “talk-tough, govern-weak” enablers — is undermining the only option Texans have to protect the health and safety of the Lone Star State.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Michael is president and CEO of Empower Texans, and its premier project, Texans for Fiscal Responsibility. A graduate of Texas A&M, former newspaper reporter, one-time Capital Hill staffer, think tank vice president and an Eagle Scout, Sullivan is married with three children. He divides his time between the Metroplex, the rest of Texas, and Austin.

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