Who Does Abbott Think He Is? Latest Border Stunt Is An Authoritarian Power Grab And Theft of Taxpayer Money

AUSTIN, Texas — This week, failed and flailing Gov. Greg Abbott is doing what he always does when his approval ratings are underwater: attempting to distract from his catastrophic failures by stoking fear around immigration.

On Friday, Abbott signed into law Republicans’ new bill allocating almost $2 billion in taxpayer money to further militarizing the border and making life harder for Texans who live there — a political stunt that does not solve real problems and is simply designed to pander to Abbott’s rightwing primary voters. However, that financial power grab wasn’t enough for Abbott. Earlier this week, the disgraced and unpopular governor — yes, the governordirected state troopers and the Texas National Guard “to shut down six points of entry along the southern border.” Unfortunately for Abbott, that’s a federal border which lies within federal jurisdiction. And though it may be convenient for a power-hungry, fear-mongering governor to try to operate far outside his jurisdiction, our country’s border policies are based on federal decisions about our country’s best interests — not the political whims of an increasingly vulnerable state executive.

For four years under Trump, millions of Texans who live close to the border suffered increased harassment and racial profiling by officials, long waits and unnecessary difficulty in crossing the border to visit family and run errands, and in many cases, loss of lands seized in order to build Trump’s wall. President Biden is working to right those wrongs, and restore not only compassionate, common-sense immigration policies to our nation, but also a better quality of life to border communities that have been sold out for too long.

Texas Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa issued the following statement:

“Right now, Greg Abbott’s approval ratings are the lowest they’ve ever been, with a majority of Texans — 59 percent — saying they don’t approve of our governor’s policies. Abbott’s failures are catching up with him, and he’s terrified that we will vote him out of office in just over a year. So he’s doing what he always does: trying to distract from his massive failures by pointing the finger at immigrants and drumming up fear around our borders.

“The thing is, it won’t work. Abbott has not done one single thing to make life better for Texans, and people across our state know it. This is a democracy, and when you attack the people you were elected to serve, you should expect to be voted out. Texans deserve strong leaders who will put people first — not Abbott’s fear-mongering, anti-Texan policies. And from now until next November, Texas Democrats will be doing everything in our power to bring an end to Abbott’s reign of terror, and elect Democrats who will fight for a better Texas for all of us.”