According to CNN, The Texas National Guard has installed more than two miles of barricade fencing along the Mexican border near El Paso and is expected to build more.
Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX) credits the fencing for causing illegal immigration in the region to “plummet.”
In a tweet, Abbot promised that his administration will “continue to deploy the National Guard, razor wire, large container boxes and building the wall to do all we can to deter illegal immigration caused by Biden.”
Migrant crossings "plummet" in El Paso as Texas National Guard expands barbwire fence.
We will continue to deploy the National Guard, razor wire, large container boxes and building the wall to do all we can to deter illegal immigration caused by Biden.https://t.co/Dfro4ejIaX
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) December 28, 2022
Border Report says the guard began setting up the barrier last week at a gap in the border wall west of the Paso del Norte port of entry. In the space of eight days, the barbed wire had nearly reached a second port of entry. There is also a chain-link fence anchored by sandbags that extends the barrier even further. As a result, asylum seekers are blocked from walking across ankle-deep water in the Rio Grande.
On Dec. 19, Justice John Roberts put a temporary hold on Title 42’s termination, leaving it in effect until the court issued an order.
However, even before the ruling, El Paso had been overwhelmed by thousands of new migrants, many of whom had grown tired of waiting or got desperate and turned themselves in to immigration authorities or simply entered the United States illegally, according to CNN.
El Paso Mayor Oscar Leeser said that shelters on the other side of the border were “completely full.” When temperatures dropped last week, the mayor was forced to declare an emergency and open up the state’s Convention Center to house at least 1000 migrants.
El Paso is ready to start using the city’s convention center to start housing at least 1,000 migrants to alleviate the already-strained local shelters.
Officials say they are prepared to add additional cots, citing the potential end of the Title 42 expulsions this month. pic.twitter.com/DmikdyJjyt
— Camilo Montoya-Galvez (@camiloreports) December 21, 2022
The installation of the fencing has made a “vast difference,” according to 1st Sgt. Suzanne Ringle of the Texas National Guard. Ringle told Border Report that she attributed the difference to the “visual deterrent” of the barbed wire, parked Humvees and soldiers patrolling the area with their semi-automatic rifles.
Ringle said many of the soldiers taking part in the El Paso operation were local residents, which means they were able to go home to their families at the end of their shifts.
Last month, CBS reported that the Biden administration had sued the state of Arizona for constructing a border wall out of shipping containers alleging that the shipping containers trespass federal lands that the state is not authorized to use.