The different approach between Republicans and Democrats regarding immigration seems to have taken its toll in the border city of McAllen, Texas, where after 49 years of being governed by Democrats, a Republican will be the new mayor.
According to The Blaze, Javier Villalobos, McAllen city commissioner, will succeed Democrat Jim Darling as mayor of McAllen after defeating fellow city commissioner Veronica Vela Whitacre in a runoff election.
The defeat of the Democrats seems to respond to the illegal immigration crisis at the border that has particularly punished the state of Texas and border cities due to the open border policies of the Biden administration and the Democrats that have allowed the entry of hundreds of thousands of immigrants, have housed them in the country and then released them inside.
On the other hand, former President Donald Trump built the wall to curb illegal crossings, in addition to establishing policies such as ‘Mexico City’ whereby immigrants claiming to seek asylum would wait on the other side of the border, eliminated the ‘catch and release’ policy effectively deporting immigrants and substantially reduced the number of visas for foreign workers to favor U.S. labor.
With his ‘America First’ policy Trump won the Hispanic and African American vote that historically went to Democrats.
Hidalgo, the county of which the city of McAllen is a part, is 85% Hispanic, and the victory of a Republican, although narrow—only 206 votes difference—reflects a rejection of the Democrats’ open borders.
Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Texas) explained that South Texas residents, despite traditionally supporting Democrats, are very similar to the demographics of Americans who supported Trump and from there stems the growing antipathy toward the Democrats’ increasingly liberal policies.
“Aside from Hispanic heritage, most of the Rio Grande Valley and South Texas have similar demographics to Trump’s strongholds in rural communities across the country. It’s homogenous, deeply religious, pensively patriotic, socially conservative, and it’s hurting economically,” Cuellar said.
With immigration crisis, Gov. Abbott faces Biden
Due to the constant flow of poor immigrants into the country and in the face of the federal government’s inaction, on June 2, Governor Greg Abbott of Texas declared a state of disaster on the border.
“President Biden’s open-border policies have paved the way for dangerous gangs and cartels, human traffickers, and deadly drugs like fentanyl to pour into our communities,” said the Texas governor.
“By declaring a state of disaster in these counties, Texas will have more resources and strategies at our disposal to protect landowners and enforce all federal and state laws to combat criminal activities stemming from the border crisis,” Abbott added.
With this declaration, Texas will impose harsher penalties against immigrants who violate the law and request more funds from the federal government to carry out the corresponding operations.
However, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), headed by Alejandro Mayorkas, has repeatedly stated that the safety of immigrants is the priority of the Biden Administration, an argument with which federal authorities continue to allow hundreds of thousands of immigrants to enter and stay in Texas.
“Our highest priority is to reunite these families. As we so powerfully saw, these are young people in their formative years. These are sometimes children as young as 3 years old. We are addressing the needs and vulnerabilities, not only of the children, but of course, their mothers, their fathers, the people that make up these families,” the DHS secretary said.
According to estimates, the Biden Administration plans to spend $9 billion through October 2021 to reunite immigrant families, give them asylum, and eventually a path to U.S. citizenship.