Before I became Lt. Governor, the Texas Legislature spent very little on border security. I have been committed to securing our border from day one.

During previous legislative sessions, we have appropriated $800 million per biennium to fund border security efforts as requested by the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS). During the 87th Regular Legislative Session, we increased our commitment to over $1.1 billion for the 2022-2023 biennium.

Today, the Texas Senate approved an additional $1.8 billion to further secure our border because the federal government under President Biden is not doing their job. This brings my total commitment to border security to over $5.3 billion since 2016. Texas taxpayers should not have to pick up the tab for what the administration should be doing, but we have no choice. 

These funds will allow Texas to increase manpower, including the Texas National Guard and local law enforcement, build miles of fencing to reinforce the border, and provide added flexibility to strengthen our response. This is not a criticism of the brave men and women of Border Patrol. Their hands have been tied by the Biden Administration.

While President Biden, Vice President Harris and their administration sit idly by, I remain committed to do whatever it takes to secure our border and maintain public safety in our state. This is not a partisan issue. The cartels have taken advantage of the administration’s lackadaisical stance to engage in human trafficking and move tens of millions of deadly doses of fentanyl into Texas.

From Texas to California, we are approaching two million illegal immigrants apprehended during fiscal year 2021, compared to an average of 435,000. Assuming we only catch half of the illegal immigrants crossing the border, we are looking at up to 4 million illegal immigrants entering our country during fiscal year 2021. Approximately 65% of these apprehensions occur in Texas. It is up to Texas to stand in the gap as the Biden Administration sells out our country.

Editor’s Note: The above commentary was penned by Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick. The commentary first appeared in a news release from the Lt. Gov.’s office.

Editor’s Note: The main image accompanying the above guest commentary shows Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick. (Photo: Texas Tribune)

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