Mexico Rejects Texas’ Proposed Border Security Bill

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By Marco Echevarria

The Mexican government has voiced a firm opposition to a comprehensive border security bill proposed by Texas, which grants state authorities the power to arrest and deport undocumented migrants. In a recent statement, Mexico’s Secretary of Foreign Relations, Alicia Bárcena, articulated the country’s rejection of the bill. However, the statement did not specify whether Mexico would accept or refuse migrants that Texas plans to expel under the new legislation, known as Senate Bill 4. Currently, Mexico does accept migrants returned by the U.S. federal government.

The proposed bill has drawn criticism from Mexican officials who argue that it could lead to family separations and racial profiling. The statement further emphasized Mexico’s stance against any measures that entail the forced return of migrants without due process.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott, who announced his intention to sign the bill, has hailed it as a significant advancement in border security. Despite requests for comment, Abbott’s office has not yet responded to the statement from Mexico.

The bill in question introduces a new state-level offense for illegal entry from a foreign country, classifying it as a Class B misdemeanor. It empowers state and local law enforcement to detain migrants who are in Texas without legal authorization. Additionally, it authorizes state judges to order the return of migrants to their countries of origin, which is presumed in most cases to be Mexico.

Legal experts, including ex-federal immigration judges, and Democrats in the Texas legislature have raised concerns about the bill’s constitutionality. The Supreme Court has historically ruled that immigration policy falls under the jurisdiction of Congress and the federal government, raising questions about the legality of such state-level initiatives.