President Joe Biden made it clear upon taking office that he would halt or even reverse all of the progress and ongoing efforts to construct a barrier wall along the southern border between the U.S. and Mexico.
But the border remains in dire need of being secured, so Texas stepped up earlier in the year to fill the void left by Biden, and has now unveiled the first portion of a border wall built with state funds, on state-owned land, the Washington Examiner reported.
This section of the wall near the small border town of Rio Grande City, once completed, will stand approximately 18 feet tall, and stretch for roughly two miles.
“Sending a message”
In an interview with the Examiner, Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush said, “We’re actually breaking ground and sending a message more importantly to the federal government that if you’re not going to do your job, Texas will.”
“We are a can-do people — a resilient people,” he continued. “We know when we’re being stiffed, and in this case, it’s this blatant disregard for enforcing federal immigration law.”
Bush, the son of former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and nephew of former President George W. Bush, explained how his office owned the land that was the site of the initial construction project and how his office had also sued the Biden administration over its cancellation of border wall construction projects that used funding properly appropriated by Congress.
Doing Biden’s job
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) held a press conference Saturday in front of the new section of border wall that had been erected about six months after he had initially announced his intention to complete the border wall in June — an ambitious project initially seeded with $250 million in state funds that have since been bolstered with additional funds appropriated by the state legislature.
“The State of Texas has taken comprehensive action to secure our southern border and address the border crisis while President Biden has sat idly by,” Abbott said in a statement. “In June, I promised Texans that we would step up in the federal government’s absence and build our own border wall.”
“We have wasted no time in the six months since that promise was made, and I am proud to announce that construction of the Texas border wall is now underway,” the governor added. “Today not only represents the first phase of the Texas border wall, but it also serves as a major milestone in our efforts to combat illegal immigration, stop the smuggling of drugs and people, and keep our communities safe.”
During Saturday’s press conference, according to the Texas Tribune, Abbott stated of the massive undertaking, “This unprecedented action is needed for one single reason, and that’s because the Biden administration has failed to do its job.”
Commissioner Bush, who is running to be the state’s next attorney general, was also present at the unveiling of the first stretch of Texas-built border wall, which reportedly was erected in only five days once begun. “It’s on state acreage that we stand today where the people of Texas finally said, enough is enough,” he explained. “Enough of open borders, enough of disorderly chaos … If the Washington, D.C. establishment doesn’t do their job, Texas will.”
All told, Texas intends to build a wall on as much of the approximately 1,000 miles of unsecured border between Texas and Mexico as possible, an effort that will undoubtedly run into problems at some point in light of the fact that much of that land is privately owned, to say nothing of any attempts by activists or the Biden administration to sabotage or stall the project in the courts.