House Republicans urge Gov. Beshear to support Texas governor in border dispute

Published 1:23 pm Wednesday, January 31, 2024

Several Kentucky House Republicans are calling for Gov. Andy Beshear to express his support for Texas Gov. Greg Abbott in his border dispute with the federal government.

The Biden administration wants to remove a razor wire fence on the border between Texas and Mexico. Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court supported the federal government’s right to do so.

However, Abbott is citing self-defense as reason to fight Border Patrol agents’ attempts to access the border fencing. He says that the federal government isn’t protecting Texas against an “invasion.”

He’s also claiming that Texas’ constitutional authority “supersedes” any conflicting federal laws.

Now, Kentucky lawmakers want Beshear to get involved. Republican Reps. Richard Heath and Rebecca Raymer filed a resolution urging Beshear to vocally support Abbott alongside 25 other governors.

“We simply cannot allow people to pour into the United States, undetected, undocumented, unchecked and circumventing a line of people that are waiting patiently, diligently and lawfully to become immigrants in this country,” Heath said.

“… Each and every illegal crossing is an opportunity to smuggle in drugs, engage in human trafficking and allow terrorists easy access.”

Tuesday, The resolution was approved by the House State Government Committee and the full House, 77-17.

Resolutions are not bills; thus, they do not carry the full force of law. It’s less a requirement, and more a position statement.

Raymer said that the issue is a matter of national security.

“This is not political theater,” she said. “This is a true sincere urging for our governor to state his support of Texas. Our border security should not be partisan.”

In committee, Rep. Tina Bojanowski, D-Louisville, brought up the federal bipartisan deal that would tie immigration reforms that Congressional Republicans want with aid to Ukraine.

Former President Donald Trump has urged Republicans to vote against the deal.

“I think Kentuckians are smart enough to realize that this resolution does nothing to help the federal government respond to immigration at the border, which again, is inherently a federal power,” Bojanowski said.

Beshear responded to the votes on X, formerly known as Twitter. He said that he has always avoided “pick-a-side politics.”

He added that he awarded the Governor’s Outstanding Unit Citation to the seven Kentucky National Guard units that have been deployed to the southern border since 2020.

“I answered the call under both Presidents Trump and Biden, and Kentucky has sent nearly 850 National Guard members to the southern border,” he Tweeted. “In doing so, we answered the call of our country, not the clamor of the latest political outrage.”

The resolution now moves to the Senate for a vote.