HARLINGEN, Texas (KVEO) — Many questions remain about whether Governor Greg Abbott’s border wall plan is legal.
“I will announce next week, the plan for the state of Texas, to begin building the border wall in the state of Texas,” declared Governor Abbott last week at his Border Security Summit in Del Rio, Texas.
Critics of the governor’s plan call into question the legality of it saying Texas doesn’t have the authority to build an international boundary.
“When you’re dealing with issues of crossing between borders, that’s a federal issue, and there’s federal preeminence as they say, over that type of issue,” said attorney Ricker Barrera.
Governor Abbott said state police officers would arrest migrants who cross the new barrier illegally.
“Here he’s going to say he’s giving his police the power to ‘detain’, and not necessarily carry out the acts of what we would consider a federal detention for immigration purposes,” said Barrera.
Experts said the state’s border wall and other attempts at stopping migrants without federal approval would most likely face challenges in court.
“I think that this is going to cost taxpayers and courts and the people of Texas way more than it’s worth, and Governor Abbott will get very little out of it,” said Barerra.
Governor Abbott said he would announce the plan for the border wall later this week.
The state budget set aside $1 billion for border security, but the budget was passed in May, before the governor made his announcement.