Supreme Court allows federal agents to cut razor wire Texas installed on US-Mexico border

Date:

BY MARK SHERMAN AND PAUL J. WEBER

WASHINGTON (AP) — A divided Supreme Court on Monday allowed Border Patrol agents to resume cutting for now razor wire that Texas installed along a stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border that is at the center of an escalating standoff between the Biden administration and the state over immigration enforcement.

The 5-4 vote clears the way for Border Patrol agents to cut or clear out concertina wire that Texas has put along the banks of the Rio Grande to deter migrants from entering the U.S. illegally. Some migrants have been injured by the sharp wire and the Justice Department has argued the barrier impedes the U.S. government’s ability to patrol the border, including coming to the aid of migrants in need of help.

None of the justices provided any explanation for their vote. The one-page order is a victory for the Biden administration while the lawsuit over the wire continues.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott had authorized the wire, one of a series of aggressive measures the three-term Republican has taken on the border in the name of curbing illegal crossings from Mexico. His spokesman said the absence of razor wire and other deterrents encourages migrants to risk unsafe crossings and makes the job of Texas border personnel more difficult.

“This case is ongoing, and Governor Abbott will continue fighting to defend Texas’ property and its constitutional authority to secure the border,” Abbott spokesman Andrew Mahaleris said.

A spokesperson for U.S. Customs and Border Protection did not immediately return a message seeking comment Monday.

A federal appeals court last month had forced federal agents to stop cutting the concertina wire.

The concertina wire stretches for roughly 30 miles (48 kilometers) near the border city of Eagle Pass, where earlier this month the Texas Military Department seized control of a city-owned park and began denying access to Border Patrol agents.

Eagle Park has become one of the busiest spots on the southern U.S. border for migrants illegally crossing from Mexico. Abbott has said Texas won’t allow Border Patrol agents into Shelby Park anymore, having expressed frustration over what he says are migrants illegally entering through Eagle Pass and then federal agents loading them onto buses.

Abbott also has authorized installing floating barriers in the Rio Grande near Eagle Pass and allowed troopers to arrest and jail thousands of migrants on trespassing charges. The administration also is challenging those actions in federal court.

In court papers, the administration said the wire impedes Border Patrol agents from reaching migrants as they cross the river and that, in any case, federal immigration law trumps Texas’ own efforts to stem the flow of migrants into the country.

Texas officials have argued that federal agents cut the wire to help groups crossing illegally through the river before taking them in for processing.

Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices Amy Coney Barrett, Ketanji Brown Jackson, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor sided with the administration. Justices Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh and Clarence Thomas voted with Texas.

___ Weber reported from Austin, Texas. Associated Press writer Valerie Gonzalez in McAllen, Texas, contributed to this report.

Find your latest news here at the Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Share post:

Subscribe to The Hemet & San Jacinto Chronicle

Popular

More like this
Related

SoCal high schools work to ensure safe, ‘celebratory’ graduations amid college turmoil over Gaza

With graduation season in full swing across Southern California, public school officials are confident that high school commencement ceremonies will not be disrupted by the kind of student activism that has flared at college campuses throughout the nation over the Israel-Gaza war.

California Man Charged In Indictment Alleging Pattern of ‘Swatting’ Calls Threatening Schools Including Sandy Hook

Eduardo Vicente Pelayo Rodriguez, 31, of Riverside, Calif., has been arrested on an 18-count indictment alleging he placed “swatting calls” threatening to commit mass shootings at several schools in the Inland Empire and Sandy Hook, and to bomb Nashville International Airport on behalf of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), the Justice Department announced this week.

Riverside Woman’s Antisemitic Threats Terrorized A Jewish Family: DOJ

A 59-year-old Riverside woman was sentenced to 32 months in prison to be followed by three years of supervised release after pleading guilty to knowingly and intentionally transmitting a threatening communication in interstate commerce, the United States Department of Justice announced Friday.

IEHP’s newly announced Community Wellness Center adds more heart to the city of San Bernardino

 Inland Empire Health Plan (IEHP) broke ground on its new Community Wellness Center (CWC) in San Bernardino on May 22, inviting health plan leaders and city officials to view the site for the first time.