Texas Senate Republican Caucus Continues to Draw Attention to Crisis At Border

April 18, 2019


People continue to die crossing the border and are forced into sex slavery in the face of Congress’ refusal to act

Senators Cornyn, Cruz, and Lt. Governor Patrick all joined Senate Republican Caucus membership


AUSTIN – Yesterday afternoon the Texas Senate Republican Caucus held a joint press conference to again call attention to the ongoing humanitarian and security crisis at the border.  Caucus Chairman Bettencourt (R-Houston) opened the press conference by remarking, “The Texas Senate recognizes the obvious: there is both a humanitarian and a security crisis on the border.  United States Senators John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Ted Cruz (R-Texas) joined the Caucus for this important announcement. Rather than a “manufactured crisis” as some have alleged, Lt. Governor Dan Patrick (R-Texas) highlighted the fact that as Congress continues to do nothing the situation has deteriorated on the Texas-Mexico international border. He said, “Since 2011 we have documentation of 1,761 dead migrants that we have recovered in Texas, many in Brooks County.”

The Department of Homeland Security has detained over 100,000 people at our border in just March alone.  Senator Cornyn asked at what number would those who refuse to act call this a crisis?  200,000?  250,000?  “I appreciate the Texas Senate stepping up and doing what Washington should be doing and I would call on our friends across the aisle to work with us to come up with solutions,” Senator Cornyn added.  “This is about solving problems.”  Senator Cruz continued, “In six months, nearly as many people have been apprehended at the border as ALL of the preceding year.”  He also highlighted the large amount of illegal drugs that have been seized at the border in just the last six months.

Recent news reports reveal undocumented women being beaten for disobeying smugglers, impregnated by strangers, coerced into prostitution, shackled to beds and trees, and bound with duct tape, rope, or handcuffs.  Chair of the Senate State Affairs Committee, Senator Joan Huffman (R-Houston), added, “I ask each and every one of you to stop and just think about a child who has braved what it must take to get through Mexico and the other Latin American countries in order to just get to the US border, what they must have gone through, do you think they weren’t possibly abused?

Over 100,000 migrants crossed our border illegally just last month, that is a crisis. The biggest threat that Texas faces is an unsecured border,” added Senator Campbell (R-New Braunfels), Chair of the Veterans Affairs and Border Security Committee. “Law enforcement is stretched thin and criminals are exploiting the situation for their own gain.

Customs and Border Protection has reported that the increase in migrant interdictions is resulting in up to 40 percent or more of CBP personnel working to care for, transport, and process vulnerable families and children, thus causing harm to the effectiveness of anti-smuggling and drug trafficking efforts.  Senator Pete Flores (R-Pleasanton), whose 19th State Senate district holds 464 miles of the border added, “We and our constituents are at our wits end. The border today is not the border of my youth… Cartels, criminals and drugs are infiltrating the backyards, ranches and farms of my constituents.

In the current biennium the Texas Legislature has allocated over $800 million to be spent on border security.  SR 535 passed by a vote of 19-12 in the Texas Senate along partisan lines declaring a crisis at the border.

Read the resolution here:
Watch the Caucus video here:

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