|Craig Estes, R-Wichita Falls (Photo copyright/courtesy of the Senate of Texas, Public Domain)|
If they want us to do their job, let's send them the bill.
The Texas State Legislature has proposed SCR 6, a concurrent resolution, which essentially proposes to send a bill to the US Federal government in the amount of $221,600,000.
The resolution claims that is the federal government's share of what Texas taxpayers have been forced to shell-out in state and local taxes to cover the costs of state and local authorities' efforts to secure the Texas-Mexico border.
Border security and immigration laws are federal responsibility. Article 1 of the US Constitution places the responsibility fully on the shoulders of the US Congress to establish laws and financing those laws in regards to immigration and border security. The constitution then mandates the executive branch (Obama) then fully enact and enforce those laws.
The resolution claims that the federal government has been remiss in its duties, allowing for terrorists and criminals such as drug smugglers and human traffickers to conduct activities across the border with impunity. Those actions have cost Texans in life, property, and health. The resolution further claims that necessity for security caused the responsibilities and costs to shift onto Texans.
Here is an excerpt:
SENATE CONCURRENT RESOLUTIONWHEREAS, It is the responsibility of the federal government to fully maintain the security of the Texas-Mexico international border; and
WHEREAS, The federal government has neglected its duty to fully maintain the security of the Texas-Mexico international border; and
WHEREAS, An unprotected border facilitates drug smuggling, human trafficking, and opens the door to spillover violence from criminal cartels; moreover, the ease with which members of terrorist organizations can enter the country poses a grave threat to homeland security; and
WHEREAS, The federal government's failure to prevent illegal entry has shifted much of the responsibility to the State of Texas; consequently, budget writers must weigh the costs of border security against the expense of other state services; during the 2012-2013 budget cycle, Texas appropriated $221,600,000 for border security operations; and
WHEREAS, The executive branch and the United States Congress have consistently delayed meaningful action on border security, forcing Texas to expend significant resources to keep the Texas-Mexico international border secure and placing an undue burden on the state's taxpayers;
The resolution, proposed by Craig Estes, (R-TX-30) of Wichita Falls and co-sponsored by 12 others, is due for a Senate floor vote in the near future.
This bill also outlines the need for increased enforcement of the Second Amendment. With the inefficiently-secured border and the increased shift of this federal responsibility to defend the country from these invading external threats to the states and individuals, the rights for citizens to remain adequately armed to defend life and property need to be protected. The statements in this resolution are further proof for "Constitutional Carry" legislation to be passed in Texas. "Constitutional Carry" would allow the open carry of firearms without necessitating a permit. Currently, open carry is forbidden in Texas except for law enforcement personnel and specially licensed private security personnel.
Given the recent federal spending cuts, the federal government will likely dismiss the resolution. Such will likely be done with levels of finger-pointing that attempt to levy blame from the "sequestration cuts" on members of the opposing party.