By: Bethany Blankley | The Center Square contributor
Fifteen Republican U.S. representatives from Texas say they won’t support new funding for the federal government at the end of the fiscal year on Sep. 30 unless the Biden administration secures the border and drops its lawsuit against the state of Texas.
Their demand also requires Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas to be fired or have his salary stripped.
The delegation, led by U.S. Rep. Chip Roy, signed a joint letter to fellow members of Congress. It states, “Dear Colleague, The State of Texas is bearing the brunt of a national crisis at our southern border directly resulting from the unlawful and irresponsible actions of President [Joe] Biden and Secretary [Alejandro] Mayorkas. Criminal cartels maintain operational control of the border. Migrants are dying on Texas ranches and along the Rio Grande. … ranchers are threatened, and high-speed chases are tearing through small towns. … dangerous fentanyl is pouring into our communities via an open border… killing 200 Americans a day.”
As a result, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, they argue, has had to use limited Texas taxpayer-funded resources to “do at least part of the job of the federal government refuses” to do. Instead of reimbursing Texas, the Biden administration sued Texas, they point out, while Texas, since 2021, has funded border security efforts reaching $10 billion.
When funding for the federal government expires, Congress will likely pass a continuing resolution or full-year appropriations to fund it, they point out. Only enacting a CR would fund current levels and “perpetuate the border crisis;” passing a full-year DHS appropriations bill without forcing the significant change necessary to secure the southern border “is equally objectionable,” they argue.
“We must use the power of the purse to force President Biden to end the carnage resulting from open borders,” they said, adding they will oppose appropriations for DHS until it takes necessary steps to secure the border. This includes signing HR 2, Roy’s border security bill, adopting policies that give law enforcement and the U.S. military the tools to target cartels, reimbursing Texas $10 billion and ensuring Mayorkas is removed from office, fired or defunded.
The demand is in line with a request by Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody asking Congress to impeach or remove Mayorkas, and if that isn’t done, to strip Mayorkas of his salary.
The signers of the letter include Reps. Brian Babin, Wesley Hunt, Keith Self, Randy Weber, Beth Van Duyne, Nathaniel Moran, Michael Burgess, Michael Cloud, Lance Gooden, Troy Nehls, Pete Sessions, Ronny Jackson, Pat Fallon and Morgan Luttrell.
Mayorkas has repeatedly said the border is secure and he will not resign.
Abbott maintains Texas has a right to defend its border and isn’t backing down from fighting the Biden administration lawsuit over barriers Texas placed in the Rio Grande River to deter illegal crossings.
More than 8 million people have illegally crossed into the U.S. from the northern and southwest borders since Biden’s been in office, with numbers continuing to increase, especially at ports of entry. Record numbers of known and suspected terrorists and criminals are being apprehended, raising concerns about how many more are not being caught because the volume of people illegally entering continues to climb despite claims made by CBP to the contrary.