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Texas Gov. Greg Abbott rolls back border inspections to crack down on migrants

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has rolled back a new inspection regime he imposed a three southern border checkpoints after the state Agriculture commissioner warned the policy was creating a ‘crisis’ and causing a spike in food prices.

Abbott put the policy of ‘enhanced safety inspections’ in place April 6, leading to major traffic jams at the border and helping spark Mexican trucker protests in opposition. 

He said the inspections were needed to stop illegal immigration in a move he paired with efforts to send three busloads full of migrants to Washington D.C. in a ploy to try to call attention to the border crisis. 

‘There is a sense of urgency now to reach deals that did not exist before,’ said Abbott, following an inspections order that resulted backups leading for miles into Mexico.

The Texas state agriculture commissioner blasted the inspections after they prompted jams that ran for miles.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott rolled back ‘enhanced inspections’ at the border that were leading to miles-long backups as the state’s top agriculture official warned it could further spike food costs

‘You cannot solve a border crisis by creating another crisis at the border,’ said Ag Commissioner Sid Miller. ‘This inspection program is turning a crisis into a catastrophe.’

The inspections ‘serve as a ‘clog in the drain’ and divert commerce and jobs to more western ports of entry,’ he complained in a statement. ‘This is not solving the border problem, it is increasing the cost of food and adding to supply chain shortages. Such a misguided program is going to quickly lead to $2.00 lemons, $5.00 avocados and worse,’ he said.  

Abbott, who is running for a third term in office, said he would suspend the enhanced inspections at crossings of three Mexican states. That came after Abbott reached commitments with Mexican states on border security. He said it was part of an effort to fight ‘open borders’ and protest the administration’s plans to stop using COVID-linked Title 42 authority to deny asylum claims at the border. 

The agreement with Chihuahua ‘will continue to implement security measures that [Gov. María Eugenia] Campos Galván started when she came into office in 2021, the Texas Tribune reported. 

The inspections led to long lines at the border and protests by truckers

The inspections led to long lines at the border and protests by truckers

Abbott blasted the Biden administration for 'open borders' and slammed the decision to stop using Title 42 authority to send away migrants

Abbott blasted the Biden administration for ‘open borders’ and slammed the decision to stop using Title 42 authority to send away migrants

Smoke rises from the site where trailers were set ablaze by suspected gang members while queuing to cross the Pharrâ¿"Reynosa International Bridge connecting the city of Reynosa to Hidalgo, Texas, which remained blocked by Mexican truckers protesting truck inspections imposed by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, in Reynosa, Mexico April 13, 2022

Smoke rises from the site where trailers were set ablaze by suspected gang members while queuing to cross the Pharrâ¿”Reynosa International Bridge connecting the city of Reynosa to Hidalgo, Texas, which remained blocked by Mexican truckers protesting truck inspections imposed by Texas Governor Greg Abbott, in Reynosa, Mexico April 13, 2022

Around twenty people who crossed the U.S. border from Venezuela gather in Union Station in Washington, D.C. on April 13, 2022 after arriving on a bus from Texas. Gov. Greg Abbott bussed migrants there as he protested the administration's immigration policies

Around twenty people who crossed the U.S. border from Venezuela gather in Union Station in Washington, D.C. on April 13, 2022 after arriving on a bus from Texas. Gov. Greg Abbott bussed migrants there as he protested the administration’s immigration policies

Cordalis, who is from Venezuela, cleans her child with supplies provided by the Catholic Charities organization in Union Station in Washington, D.C. on April 13, 2022 after arriving on a bus from Texas

Cordalis, who is from Venezuela, cleans her child with supplies provided by the Catholic Charities organization in Union Station in Washington, D.C. on April 13, 2022 after arriving on a bus from Texas

Buses took migrants near the Capitol outside the building that houses studios for NBC and Fox News

Buses took migrants near the Capitol outside the building that houses studios for NBC and Fox News

A worker with Catholic Charities speaks to a person who was one of around twenty people who arrived on a bus in Washington, D.C. on April 13, 2022 from Texas

A worker with Catholic Charities speaks to a person who was one of around twenty people who arrived on a bus in Washington, D.C. on April 13, 2022 from Texas

State AG Paxton told Fox Business governor 'has figured out we can stop trade along the border, slow it down'

State AG Paxton told Fox Business governor ‘has figured out we can stop trade along the border, slow it down’

His move came after the Wall Street Journal’s editorial page inveighed against the move as a threat to trade and calling it a ‘stunt’ that ‘could hurt Republicans in districts along the border, where the party has been gaining support.’

‘It could also turn immigration politics more toxic and make Mexico less inclined to help at the border. Mr. Abbott is making the border problem worse, and giving Democrats a way to deflect attention from Mr. Biden’s failures,’ the Journal’s editorial board wrote.

Abbott on Wednesday had said he was taking the actions in response to the administration’s plan to stop using Title 42 authority to turn away migrants in May – which has officials predicting a crush of immigration later this spring.

‘Leaders in Congress have no idea about the chaos they have caused by the open border policies and they refuse to come down and see firsthand and talk to the people who are really they’re just dropping bombs of illegal immigrants from countries across the entire globe, leaving those local communities to have to grapple with it,’ Abbott said.

The White House, which was hit with yet another damaging report on rising inflation this week, took a victory lap on word of Abbott’s shift.

‘We appreciate him backing down in response to the economic harm he was causing to U.S. businesses and consumers,’ said a spokesperson in response. 

Abbott’s partial rollback of his inspections policy at the border coincided with the move to ship busloads of asylum-seekers to Washington, with the first busload of volunteers dropped off in front of the building where Fox News and NBC have offices.

Texas AG Ken Paxton called Abbott’s move ‘genius,’ telling Fox Business Network it was designed to stop border trade for negotiating purposes.

‘The governor has figured out we can stop trade along the border, slow it down, and it will create pressure on Mexico and some of their governors to work out a deal to help us with border security,’ he said. 


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