The Lone Star State Republican governor sent a letter to Biden’s Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra stating: ‘The federal government must solve the federal problem caused by the Biden administration’s disastrous open-border policies.
‘Texas will not be commandeered into federal government service,’ he continued.
A series of June letters between Texas and HHS was obtained by Politico.
Abbott is planning to strip shelters of their license, which are needed to remain open, if they continue to serve migrant kids beginning August 31, which is estimated to uproot the accommodations for nearly 4,500 unaccompanied minor border crossers.
This plan would force shelters to stop caring for children and would specifically target the 52 shelters across Texas that currently accommodate for minor migrants
Federal health officials are threatening to sue Abbott if he goes forward with the plan.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott is planning to revoke 52 migrant detention center licenses if they continue to cater to the 4,500 unaccompanied minors in their custody by August 31. In letters to Biden’s HHS, Abbott wrote: ‘The federal government must solve the federal problem caused by the Biden administration’s disastrous open-border policies’
Mass numbers of migrants continue to flow into the U.S from Central America and Mexico as the Biden administration experiences record numbers of encounters since he took office. Here immigrant kids walk toward border patrol after crossing the Rio Grande into La Joya, Texas on June 21, 2021
Record numbers of apprehension were reported since Biden took office. In May there were the most so far with 180,034 encounters that month alone
The intensifying conflict between Abbott and Biden’s administration comes as the Texas governor plans to accompany former President Donald Trump during a border trip near McAllen, Texas on Wednesday.
Abbott’s plan would leave more than 25 per cent of the migrant kids in U.S. custody without a place to stay.
HHS is already stretched thin with massive numbers of illegal border crossers every day and record numbers of encounters each month since Biden took office – including the biggest spike yet from February to March.
In the letters, Abbott did not offer any housing alternatives if the shelters shutter their doors to migrants.
Instead, the Trump ally has said that’s the responsibility of the federal government, and in particular HHS.
Deputy General Counsel Paul Rodriguez sent a letter to Texas officials, including Abbott, asking about specifics on how they planned to implement the order.
A spokesperson for HHS said they are still awaiting a response to the more than two dozen questions.
‘We are exploring our options, for the sake of protecting the safety and well-being of unaccompanied children at licensed facilities in Texas,’ the spokesperson said.
Illegal crossers wait to be processed after crossing the Rio Grande into the U.S. on June 16, 2021
HHS set up several temporary shelters to house minor migrants to more quickly move them from border processing facilities, which were slammed as overcrowded, understaffed and inhumane.
Abbott criticized the emergency pop up sites. Two months ago, he called one shelter in Texas ‘a health and safety nightmare.’
A legal filing earlier last week also revealed that the HHS emergency sites are no better, and sometimes even worse, than the conditions in the border patrol facilities.
Children reported being kept for more than 60 days and receiving little sleep or outdoor time and limited access to showers and clean clothes.
They also wrote testimonials describing bouts of depression, trouble sleeping and being served undercooked or spoiled food.
Abbott invited Trump to survey the southern border with him, after several months of Vice President Kamala Harris neglecting to visit the U.S.-Mexico border despite the administration putting her in charge of the crisis.
Earlier this month, Trump announced he accepted the invitation – and he will visit on Wednesday with Abbott.
Harris, eight days after Trump’s announcement of an impending visit, finally decided to make the trek to the southern border.
She went to El Paso, Texas on Friday, five days before Trump’s scheduled trip.
The vice president, however, was criticized for going to El Paso instead of the Rio Grande, where the majority of encounters and apprehensions are taking place.