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TX Gov Abbott declares border invasion; sending gun boats, Nat’l Guard and more

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on June 22, 2020. (Ricardo B. Brazziell/Austin American-Statesman/TNS)
November 15, 2022

Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott declared on Tuesday morning that an invasion is taking place along the U.S. southern border and he will send National Guard troops and “gun boats” to secure the border and “repel” people trying to cross illegally.

On Tuesday, Abbott tweeted, “I invoked the Invasion Clauses of the U.S. & Texas Constitutions to fully authorize Texas to take unprecedented measures to defend our state against an invasion. I’m using that constitutional authority, & other authorization & Executive Orders to keep our state & country safe.”

Along with his tweet, Abbott included a screenshot of a list of actions Texas will take now that he has invoked invasion clauses in the U.S. and Texas state constitutions.

  • Deploy the National Guard to safeguard our border & to repel & turn back immigrants trying to cross the border illegally;
  • Deploy the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) to arrest & return to the border immigrants who crossed illegally & deploy DPS to arrest illegal immigrants for criminal activity;
  • Build a border wall in multiple counties on the border;
  • Deploy gun boats to secure the border;
  • Designate Mexican drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations;
  • Enter into a compact with other states to secure the border;
  • Enter into agreements with foreign powers to enhance border security; &
  • Provide resources for border counties to increase their efforts to respond to the border invasion.

Article 1, Section 10, Clause 3 of the U.S. Constitution states, “No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, lay any Duty of Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent Danger as will not admit of delay.”

Article 4, Section 4 of the U.S. Constitution states, “The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion.”

Article 4, Section 7 of the Texas Constitution states the the governor of Texas “shall have power to call forth the militia to execute the laws of the State, to suppress insurrections, and to repel invasions.”

Along with declaring an invasion, Abbott said he will also designate Mexican drug cartels as foreign terrorist organizations. In September, Abbott issued an executive order designating Mexican drug cartels terrorist organizations and asked President Joe Biden to issue similar federal declarations against the Sinaloa and Jalisco New Generation Cartels.

Abbott has previously enacted multiple security and emergency declarations along the U.S. southern border.

In June of last year, he issued a disaster declaration for the state over the influx of illegal border crossers. Abbott has also deployed thousands of Texas National Guard troops and State Troopers to help secure the border and has ordered shipping containers to be lined up along the border as a barrier to would-be border crossers.

In July of this year, Abbott issued an executive order instructing the Texas National Guard to capture illegal immigrants in the U.S. and take them back to the southern border.

Abbott is among a group of 26 Republican governors who called on Biden to more strictly enforce immigration laws and address illegal immigration.

As part of his effort to pressure Biden to take more action on border security, Abbott has also been sending busloads of illegal border crossers to liberal areas that overwhelmingly voted for Biden in the 2020 election, including New York City and Washington D.C.