Bethany Blankley, The Center Square
Gov. Six months after his announcement that Texas would build its own border wall, Greg Abbott debuted construction in Rio Grande City of part of the Texas wall.
“Texas is taking what truly is unprecedented action by any state ever for a state to build a wall on our border to secure the sovereignty of the United States as well as our own state,” Abbott said Saturday. “And this unprecedented action is needed for one single reason, and that’s because the Biden administration has failed to do its job as required by law as passed by Congress to enforce the immigration laws of the United States of America.”
Abbott mentioned the staggering number of illegal immigrants being brought across the border by the government, as well as the extraordinary amount of drug trafficking into the country.
Abbott stated that enough fentanyl has been confiscated by the Texas Department of Public Safety to allow for everyone in Texas, California and New York to die. Citing a report that came out Friday, Abbott said, the number one cause of death for Americans between the ages of 18 and 45 “isn’t COVID-19, car wrecks, or cancer, it’s fentanyl.
“Joe Biden has facilitated the death of those people by the open border policies that he has allowed to take place here in Texas,” Abbott said. “And it must be stopped. The people who are making money off of this are the gangs and the cartels that our DPS and National Guard are working to apprehend every single day.”
RELATED: Abbott Accuses Biden Of ‘Flip-Flopping’ On Border Strategy, Cruz Says Crisis Would End If White House Just Follows The Law
It is made of steel, and was constructed in similar ways to the Trump wall. However, Saturday’s debut portion was created by McAllen Strong Steel (a Texas company).
Since March, when Abbott launched Operation Lone Star, the Texas state has been taking a variety of approaches to building its Texas border wall. The Texas Legislature approved the $3 billion measure to finance Texas’ border security.
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Abbott claimed that the National Guard had already constructed border barriers near the Texas-Mexico Border, such as razor wire, container ships, razor wire, barricades in water, and fences on private property.
Governor George P. Bush was joined by Steve McCraw, Texas DPS Director and several other state and local officials.
Steven Alvis of Texas Facilities Commission stated that 200 feet has been put up per day by workers. He said things normally taken 2 to 3 months, but have now taken just two days. With people working round the clock to make things happen in record time.
Alvis explained that they had followed all legal and safety protocols and have simplified each step. He said this after Alvis awarded them the first contract 22 working days ago. They were then able to close for just three days during bad weather.
Texas has 1,254 miles of border with Mexico. Alvis stated that the Texas DPS identified the first areas for the construction.
Texas General Land Office is responsible for the area where the wall was built. Bush explained that it is on land leased by a local farmer, who witnesses about 100 illegal migrants crossing his fields daily.
Abbott repeated that the wall will be built on both state-owned land and private property. In response to a question, he said, “the federal government has no authority whatsoever to interfere with our efforts to secure our state.”
RELATED: Texas Governor Abbott Using The National Guard To Arrest Illegal Immigrants On Southern Border
When asked how much taxpayers were spending to fund the wall’s construction, Abbott replied, “They are paying far more than they should have to pay. We are only doing this because the federal government won’t enforce immigration law. Because Biden isn’t doing that, Texas taxpayers are having to step up and do his job.”
Abbott stated that the cost per mile varies depending on where it is located and what material is used. While he wouldn’t commit to a total estimated projected amount to build the wall, he said the cost “will be as much as it takes to build as much wall as we possibly can.”
One of Biden’s first acts in office was to halt construction of the border wall, which had been authorized by Congress in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2020.
The wall at the Southwest border was funded by Congress with $1.375 billion. Funds were also received from the Department of Homeland Security Appropriations act, which brought the total amount to approximately $3 billion.
Biden had stopped the construction of the wall. Texas Attorney-General Ken Paxton, Missouri Attorney-General Eric Schmitt filed suit, saying that Biden’s actions infringed federal law.
Many of the materials for the federal wall that taxpayers have already spent on were damaged by sections left unfinished by Trump’s border wall. The contractual obligations of the firm that built the wall cost taxpayers $3,000,000 per day.
This article was Syndicated by permission of The Center Square.