(TruthAndLiberty.com) – On Thursday the Texas Senate fast-tracked two measures that would allow the state to have greater control over immigration enforcement.
One of the bills would make crossings from Mexico into Texas an illegal crime, while the other would provide over $1.5 billion in funds that can be used for border enforcement. The legislation was passed only two days after the start of a special legislative session. The legislative action came right as the Senate suspended the rules of procedure that it used normally.
The legislation that criminalizes unauthorized border crossings on a state level is relatively controversial as the federal government is generally understood to have complete authority over immigration enforcement.
On Friday, a group of former immigration judges also targeted the legislation arguing that it was in conflict with the U.S. treaty obligations and constitutional law. The former judges noted that the legislation proposed would enable a state court magistrate judge to issue removal orders. However, as they noted immigration was federally controlled and as such, these types of moves were unlawful.
They further noted that state legislators are not in a position to enact this type of legislation in the same way that the United States Congress is not able to enact Texas state legislation. As they pointed out this is something that those who had proposed the law were aware of.
Those who oppose the criminalization of border crossings have also argued that having those crimes policed could possibly lead to abuses.
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