Saturday, April 20, 2024

Thimesch: Operation Lone Star is working

Last month, I attended a briefing in Eagle Pass, Texas with Governor Greg Abbott and Mike Banks, the Governor’s “border czar” who is a three-decade career law enforcement leader and has 23 years of experience specifically with US Border Patrol and border security. I was joined by several of my colleagues from the Texas House of Representatives, including my fellow Denton County reps Dr. Lynn Stucky and Ben Bumgarner.

We came away with one clear understanding: Operation Lone Star is working.

Texas officials illustrated the amount of work and effort we are investing, which is a stark contrast to what the federal government is doing. Illegal border crossings were at a record high in December 2023, as we all could see on the national news every night.

Special Agent Banks showed us how most border crossings occur at a few major checkpoints along the Rio Grande – mostly population centers like El Paso, Eagle Pass, and Laredo. The Texas Military’s increased efforts at many of those cities have effectively strangled the flow of traffic, which is how Eagle Pass became the final remaining hot spot for illegal immigration last fall.

Thanks to the $6.6 billion of additional funding and support that the House approved in the fall, new and additional resources have been directed to Eagle Pass, among other objectives. CBS recently reported that, “In recent weeks, the flow of migrants crossing into the U.S. illegally has largely shifted away from Texas, concentrating instead in Arizona and California, where immigration officials are now recording roughly 60% of all unlawful border crossings, according to internal federal government figures obtained by CBS News.”

You read that correctly: The flow of migrants is shifting away from Texas — because we are the state taking the lead to close the border.

And I’m extremely proud that the Texas House helped fund the new “Forward Operating Base”, which will be an 80-acre facility to house 1,500 Texas National Guard members. Presently these troops are spread across the southern border, packed into hotel rooms which are insufficient in quantity, too far from the border sites, and without laundry facilities, dining halls, or proper health care and PT options. We must take better care of our Texas military members who are taking time away from loved ones in order to serve us all.

This is exactly what Texas needs to continue doing – protecting and defending our own borders, and our own military. Biden’s policies are a disaster for Texas and are giving the cartels free rein to keep smuggling in humans, drugs, and weapons. Governor Abbott showed strong leadership and has held firm to our commitment to secure the border and do what the federal government won’t.

Do not believe anyone who tells you that “Operation Lone Star is not working” or that we are “just throwing money at the problem.” I have seen it for myself, and I know that our efforts at the border are having immediate impacts. I’m proud to be supporting this pro-active approach of defending the US southern border and keeping Texans safer.

Kronda Thimesch
State Rep. District 65

CTG Staff
CTG Staff
The Cross Timbers Gazette News Department

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