Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Saturday announced Operation Lone Star, which he said would integrate the state’s own resources to try to contain damage from the new migrant surge that’s struck the Biden administration.
Mr. Abbott said the operation is aimed at the smuggling cartels, which control the routes for getting drugs and people across the border.
The Republican governor squarely blamed President Biden’s moves to undo former President Donald Trump’s immigration policies for inviting the surge.
“The crisis at our southern border continues to escalate because of Biden Administration policies that refuse to secure the border and invite illegal immigration,” he said in a statement.
He said the situation has become “a humanitarian crisis.”
The Biden administration has declined to label the situation a “crisis,” instead calling it a “challenge” that the administration insists it is meeting.
Illegal immigrants are being caught by Border Patrol agents then quickly released directly into Texas communities, without any coronavirus testing.
Some communities are doing COVID testing themselves, although they said it’s nearly useless because of the conditions and the incubation period. Besides, officials say, even if migrants do test positive there’s little they can do to stop the migrants from getting on buses and trains anyway.
One local official involved in testing said the migrants usually leave within a day of being released by the Border Patrol, regardless of their test results.