Governor Abbott has immediately called the legislature back for a fourth special session to pass border security as well as other items beneficial to Texans. This is coming on the back of a failed third special session. A couple of crucial border security bills have been introduced, each aimed at fortifying our borders and protecting our communities from the threats posed by illegal immigration.
H.B. 3/S.B. 3: A Step Towards Border Wall Construction:
At the forefront of the fourth special session’s agenda is H.B. 3, a bill dedicated to the construction of the border wall. This vital piece of legislation proposes a substantial $1.5 billion-dollar allocation to fund the construction. A portion of that fund would pay law enforcement to protect the areas where the wall would be built.
As one might expect from observing the Texas legislature during the 88th session, however, this legislation has a serious flaw. Both the House and Senate versions include provisions preventing the money from being used to acquire land by eminent domain or build a border barrier on land acquired in this way. Eminent domain is a dirty term for conservatives. Still, we argue that if it can be used for road construction, utility right-of-ways, and libraries, it should be authorized to ensure the fundamental purpose of the government: protecting our sovereign territory and ensuring the safety of our citizens. That’s why we have consistently supported efforts to extend eminent domain authority to border barrier construction while encouraging the State of Texas to ensure that landowners’ needs are met.
H.B. 4/S.B. 4: Empowering Law Enforcement to Deport Illegal Aliens:
One of the most significant issues in Texas is the inability of law enforcement to send illegal aliens back to where they came from. H.B. 4 would make illegals return to the nearest port of entry they came from unless they are being prosecuted for a different crime here. There are some troubling safe harbors to enforcement, however. Illegal aliens cannot be arrested or detained in churches, hospitals, or schools, and inevitably, the cartels will exploit this provision. Overall, this bill is still a step in the right direction toward securing our southern border.
Updates Await: Stay Informed on the Battle for Border Security:
As the fourth special session unfolds, stay tuned for further updates on these pivotal bills. The fight for border security is a dynamic and evolving process, and we must hold leaders accountable to ensure the passage of good legislation. Be vigilant, stay engaged, and support the legislative efforts that prioritize the safety and well-being of the great state of Texas.
In the face of unprecedented challenges at our southern border, the fourth special session is a much-needed time to pass legislation that is effective in not only repelling illegal crossings but deterring them from entering. With H.B. 3 paving the way for the construction of the border wall and H.B. 4 allowing deportation to the nearest port of entry, these bills represent a step towards securing our borders and protecting the Texan way of life. As the legislative process unfolds, let us stand united in the pursuit of a safer, stronger, and more secure nation.