House Republicans have introduced legislation to reimburse Texas for its efforts to combat illegal immigration due to the inattention to the crisis from the Biden administration. The Lone Star Reimbursement Act, sponsored by Rep. Pat Fallon (R-TX), would draw $4.4 billion from the Departments of Defense and Homeland Security for the fiscal year (FY) 2024 for the state of Texas.
The funds would help cover the state’s costs for Operation Lone Star, which has apprehended over 348,000 illegal immigrants and arrested more than 24,000 criminals. Republicans blame Joe Biden’s failed immigration policies for the crisis and accuse his administration of leaving border states to pick up the tab.
Thanks U.S. Rep. Pat Fallon for the "Lone Star Reimbursement Act”
It would force the Feds to reimburse Texas for the state’s border security initiative.
The bill notes Texas has arrested 134,000 illegal immigrants & denied entry to 16,700.https://t.co/1GXIa33LZd
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) June 23, 2022
The legislation comes as GOP lawmakers call for the impeachment of Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas for his handling of the influx of illegal immigrants. The move also follows a letter from several House Republicans to President Biden urging him to reimburse Texas for its efforts to stem illegal immigration.
The Lone Star Reimbursement Act, first introduced last year, is co-sponsored by Reps. Ronny Jackson (R-TX), Roger Williams (R-TX), Kay Granger (R-TX), Michael Cloud (R-TX), Michael Burgess, M.D. (R-TX),, Jake Ellzey (R-TX),, Randy Weber (R-TX),, Brian Babin (R-TX),, Troy Nehls (R-TX),, August Pfluger (R-TX) and Louie Gohmert (R-TX).
According to Congressman Fallon, “Border security is national security. As a border state, Texas is disproportionately impacted by illegal immigration, but we shouldn’t be forced to bear the entire financial burden when it comes to securing the entire country.” He argued that the Lone Star Reimbursement Act recognizes this and that “if the President won’t do his job, Congress will.”
Republicans have linked the ongoing crisis at the border to the policies of the Biden administration, particularly the rollback of successful Trump-era policies. In response, the White House has pointed to its own measures introduced this year, such as the arrest of 8,000 smugglers and the seizure of 23,000 lbs of fentanyl, which they claim are having results.
However, Republicans have rejected Biden’s proposed comprehensive immigration bill, which includes a pathway to citizenship for millions of illegal immigrants and additional funding requested by the administration.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) implemented Operation Lone Star as a critical tool in stemming the tide of illegal immigration. Still, Texas cannot do it alone, according to Fallon. The legislation seeks to have the federal government reimburse Texas for all costs incurred during Operation Lone Star and to work with Texas to secure the border.