FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) - This week, Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton asked a federal judge to order the Biden administration to immediately resume building the wall along the southern border.
Paxton says the Biden administration must start building the wall again because Congress appropriated the money for it.
US Representative Beth Van Duyne, R-24th Congressional District, said Wednesday that she agrees with Paxton's request. "The borders are over-run. We're seeing the results of their deadly policies in our communities every single day. And yet, all we're seeing is delay tactics by the by the administration. They stopped what was working."
Federal records show between January 1 and November 30 this year, there were nearly one point nine million migrants either apprehended, turned away, or expelled at the southern border.
Texas Representative Chris Turner, D-Grand Prairie and Chair of the House Democratic Caucus rejected Paxton's request. "The bottom line is the border wall, the Trump border wall that he said Mexico would pay for, which, of course, was ridiculous, was an obscene waste of money. It was simply political theater and Ken Paxton is just trying to carry on that theater with this latest court stunt."
On his first day in office, President Joe Biden issued a proclamation calling for an immediate pause in the building of the border wall.
SMU Constitutional Law Professor Dale Carpenter said in court papers, the administration has said it's not violating the law. "What the President is saying here is that I'm not violating Congress's will. I'm spending the money that's supposed to be spent. There's no timeline on spending that money. There's no date by which the wall actually has to be built. Give me the time, and I'm doing my job. I think the Attorney General is pointing out that although the Biden administration says it is spending money for this purpose, it's not actually going to end up building the wall that it is supposed to build. The President himself has said so."
As a result of the Biden administration halting construction of the border wall, the State of Texas started building its own.
On Saturday, Governor Greg Abbott debuted the first 900 feet of wall.
The State Legislature approved about $3 billion for border security this year.
Representative Turner said, "We've seen a new polarization of the issue from the likes of Ken Paxton and Greg Abbott."
In November, Congresswoman Van Duyne sent a letter to the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security asking him to give Texas $100 million in unused steel panels and border wall materials to the state of Texas for its wall.
Van Duyne said Wednesday that she didn't receive a response. "If they're going to have to do the work, at least give them the materials that have already been paid for by taxpayer money."
Carpenter points to the U.S. Constitution which says immigration is a federal issue. "There could be a huge impact on the states. It is the case that Congress and the President have the primary authority to control immigration policy, to set immigration policy, even if the states don't like that policy."
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