tags: Press Releases

ICYMI: “Greg Abbott’s border stunts show the GOP doesn’t want to fix immigration”

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Democrats Should Learn to Stand Up and Push Back on GOP So Called “ Solutions”

Washington, DC – In a recent piece for the Washington Post, Paul Waldman argues that Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s border stunts are representative of how the GOP does not want to work to actually fix immigration problems. In his piece, Waldman outlines how Abbott’s contrived border inspection stunt was designed to advance his political standing even as his actions created chaos and undermined the economy of Texas and the nation in the process.

Below, find excerpts of the Washington Post piece found here, followed by our take.

“Last week Abbott implemented a policy of secondary inspections for trucks crossing the border from Mexico, so that after they pass through the regular inspection by Customs and Border Protection, they have to be inspected again by Texas state authorities. The supposed justification was a search for drugs and undocumented immigrants.

The result has been a nightmarish backup slowing the enormous commercial traffic that crosses the border every day to a crawl, with produce going bad in trucks as they wait in the traffic jam. 

… As governor, Abbott could actually implement substantive immigration reforms. In practice, he leans toward the same kind of playacting, posturing and feigned outrage that characterize all Republicans’ approach to immigration, whether they’re right at the border or thousands of miles away.

It’s all driven by twin fantasies Republicans want to propagate. First, they want everyone convinced that there’s always a ‘crisis’ at the border, where America is overrun with migrants who are coming to destroy the country. Second, they tell everyone that Biden has an ‘open borders’ policy, that he’s just allowing unlimited numbers of undocumented immigrants to stroll in so they can take your job, assault your family and vote in the next election.

In fact, in most ways Biden’s border policies are pretty much what was in place when Donald Trump left office. Apprehensions at the Southwest border — i.e., people trying to come but being caught — even rose dramatically from 2020 to 2021.

… So could it be that Republicans don’t actually want a solution to the challenges of immigration policy?

If you haven’t seen a lot of news about the hard work congressional Republicans are putting in trying to solve this complex problem, that’s because they aren’t doing much of anything. They’ve had plenty of opportunities to pass immigration reform, and every time, they’ve killed it.

The basic outline of a deal has always been clear: Republicans would get beefed-up border enforcement, and Democrats would get a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. Both are extremely popular with the public. But Republicans won’t even try anymore.

Instead, they prefer to chant ‘build the wall’ and pull ludicrous stunts like putting migrants on buses, meant to appeal to their nativist base without accomplishing anything. Remember that the next time you hear them complain that it’s all Biden’s fault.”

According to Vanessa Cárdenas, Deputy Director of America’s Voice:

Gov. Abbot is a prime example of Republicans being more interested in public stunts and Fox viewership than in real solutions. He is more than willing to use people to play politics – whether it is consumers finding empty store shelves because of his redundant truck ‘inspections’ and the resulting border commerce shutdown, or new refugees seeking out their families so they can prepare their legal cases seeking asylum. People are hurt when Republicans play politics with people’s lives. 

Fortunately, here in Washington, DC, a coalition of community organizations demonstrate the ‘American can do’ attitude that we should embrace. They have welcomed those escaping violence and political persecution and have helped these asylum-seekers continue their journeys to reunite with their families. By putting refugees on buses to DC, Abbot wanted to show chaos and distrust, instead he is now seeing a community coming together to help those in need. 

The United States is more than able to handle people coming to our borders. We can process them and let them go through our asylum process – as the law requires. That is the solution-oriented approach and the kind of leadership we need, not opportunistic politicians using people as political pawns.