The Crisis on our Southern Border

Texas Governor Greg Abbott made headlines with a letter condemning the federal government for its handling of the illegal immigration crisis at our southern border. He stated that since President Biden’s inauguration, over 6 million illegal immigrants have entered the United States—exceeding the population of most states. The situation is escalating: in December alone, border officials encountered over 300,000 migrants, marking the highest monthly figure on record.

Governor Abbott asserts that, under Article I, Section 10, Clause 3 of the Constitution, Texas has the constitutional right to defend its borders. He argues that by failing to protect each state against invasion, as mandated by Article IV, the federal government has relinquished its responsibilities to the states.

In Federalist 43, James Madison claimed that society owes its constituents protection against invasion. This aligns with Governor Abbott’s assertion: the states are entitled to federal protection—a provision they are currently denied.

Madison also contended that the Constitution’s wording ensures state security not only from foreign aggression but also from the encroachments of more powerful neighbors. The unregulated influx of millions, including individuals from terror-watch-listed countries, embodies the scenario Madison warned of, necessitating federal intervention. Moreover, the profits amassed by human traffickers and cartels represent the malevolent enterprises Madison sought to prevent.

The federal government, specifically the executive branch, bears the duty of enforcing our nation’s laws, which includes securing our borders. However, the Biden administration has not only neglected to secure our border but has also obstructed Texas’s independent efforts. Federal agents have dismantled wire fencing erected by Texas and have assisted migrants in circumventing state-implemented barriers.

Americans should question the precedent set by the federal government’s selective law enforcement. By choosing which laws to enforce, the Biden administration risks eroding the rule of law and inflaming state and local tensions, as officials prioritize politics over their obligations to citizens.

President Biden exemplifies this issue. One of his first proposals upon taking office was an amnesty package devoid of substantial border security enhancements. Since then, his administration has consistently refused to address the illegal immigration that is overwhelming our communities.

When recently questioned by a reporter about securing the border, President Biden responded, I’ve done all I can do. Just give me the power I’ve asked from the very day I got into office. Give me the Border Patrol. Give me the people—give me the people, the judges. Give me the people who can stop this and make it work right.”  But given the administration’s current refusal to enforce existing laws, why should anyone expect adherence to new ones?

America once had a secure southern border under a president who enforced the law without excuses. As head of the executive branch, President Trump utilized all available means—including a border wall, Title 42, and policies like “Remain in Mexico”—to curb the influx from our southern border.

Today, the repercussions of ineffective leadership are evident as illegal immigration surges to unprecedented levels. This influx will depress wages, elevate crime rates, burden public resources, and disrupt communities for generations. It is alarming that the Biden administration not only shirks law enforcement duties but also hinders states from compensating for this failure.