Gov Abbott’s hardball move brings Mexican border-state governors to negotiating table, begins to pay off

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Using Trump-styled negotiation, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has managed within just one week to obtain border security guarantees from several Mexican governors.

The negotiations started last week when the governor ordered troopers with the Texas Department of Public Safety “to inspect every commercial truck for illegal drugs and immigrants as they crossed at least four international bridges as a response to the Biden administration’s plan to end Title 42,” according to The Texas Tribune.

The order reportedly led to “bogged down border commerce,” prompting Mexico’s border-state governors to come to the negotiating table, starting on Wednesday with Samuel Alejandro Garcia Sepulveda, the governor of Nuevo Leon.

In exchange for Abbott easing up on inspections at the bridge closest to Nuevo Leon, Garcia agreed to implement certain “border security measures that will prevent illegal immigration from Mexico to Texas and improve the flow of traffic across the Colombia Solidarity International Bridge,” according to a press release from the governor’s office.

The Center for Immigration Studies, a staunch supporter of tough immigration laws, noted the relevancy of Wednesday’s stunning deal.

“[A]n American state has, apparently for the first time, successfully usurped federal responsibility for national diplomacy by enacting its own punitive measures that forced a sovereign country – in this case, Mexico – to comply with its wishes on a national issue like cross-border immigration,” according to CIS.

Indeed, and it’s done so using a Trumpian “carrot and stick” approach, which is the method by which former President Donald Trump had resolved a number of issues with America’s southern neighbor.

The following day on Thursday, two additional governors came to the negotiating table, Chihuahua Gov. María Eugenia Campos Galván and Coahuila Gov. Miguel Ángel Riquelme Solís, and they reportedly signed similar agreements with Abbott.

“Governor Abbott signed memoranda of understanding (MOUs) between the State of Texas and the State of Chihuahua and the State of Texas and the State of Coahuila to enhance border security measures that will prevent illegal immigration from Mexico to Texas and improve the flow of traffic across the Bridge of the Americas and the Acuña-Del Rio International Bridge,” a press release from Abbott’s office reads.

“The MOUs go into effect immediately and mirror the historic MOU signed by Governor Abbott and Nuevo León Governor Samuel Alejandro García Sepúlveda yesterday in Laredo.”

The Biden administration, which faces intense scrutiny from critics who say it’s incentivizing illegal migration, has meanwhile been bashing Abbott, claiming that he’s to blame for inflated prices in Texas.

“Governor Abbott’s unnecessary and redundant inspections of trucks transiting ports of entry between Texas and Mexico are causing significant disruptions to the food and automobile supply chains, delaying manufacturing, impacting jobs, and raising prices for families in Texas and across the country,” White House press secretary Jen Psaki claimed in a statement Wednesday.

“Local businesses and trade associations are calling on Governor Abbott to reverse this decision because trucks are facing lengthy delays exceeding 5 hours at some border crossings and commercial traffic has dropped by as much as 60 percent. The continuous flow of legitimate trade and travel and CBP’s ability to do its job should not be obstructed. Governor Abbott’s actions are impacting people’s jobs, and the livelihoods of hardworking American families,” the statement added.

Congressional Democrats have also been pushing the same talking point:

It’s not clear how one week of border-crossing inspections are to blame for prices that have been slowly inflating across the country for months on end.

It’s also not clear why, instead of complaining about Abbott, the administration isn’t now praising him for having accomplished something — border security deals — that has eluded the Democrat-controlled federal government.

Were the administration to follow his lead instead of smearing him, critics say, maybe they could finally stop what has been months upon months of endless illegal migration across America’s southern border.


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Vivek Saxena


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