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By Bethany Blankley [The Center Square contributor] –
U.S. Rep. Chip Roy, R-Texas, blasted House Republicans for saying one thing and doing another on border security. He took to the House floor on Wednesday, one day before Texas celebrates its independence from Mexico, arguing House Republicans wouldn’t have had the guts to defend the Alamo.
Texas declared independence on March 2, 1836; in defending the Alamo, roughly 200 were besieged by roughly 6,000 and the Alamo fell on March 6. More Texans would die and Gen. Sam Houston, who would later call on the state legislature to respond to an invasion at the southern border, led Texans to victory on April 21, 1836.
On Wednesday, House Republicans overwhelmingly voted to pass a three-page bill requiring the executive branch to report on the inflationary impact of executive orders but rejected an amendment that would have banned “emergency” executive orders from being issued, which Roy argues are the primary drivers of inflation.
Roy didn’t vote for the bill, arguing it was continuing “the games too often played in this town.” He also echoed a claim he made last December when holding up the vote for House Speaker: if those in Congress don’t prioritize border security, he and others would oppose House bills. Only three others joined him.
“A federal government that opens our border to cartels, a group of Republicans who campaign on securing the border, who run away in abject surrender, refusing to actually do it, that’s the question before us right now,” Roy said. “That’s the question for every member of the Republican conference.
“I’m speaking to you. If you do not secure the border now, now, you are giving up any argument you have for the American people to put their faith in you. Will Republicans honor their campaign commitments to secure the border, yes or no?”
The answer appears to be no, he implied, saying, “What I am seeing right now from my Republican colleagues does not give me faith that they will stand up in the breach as did those men who stood on the wall of the Alamo.”
On Feb. 24, 1836, Lt. Col. William Travis called on Texans and Americans for aid while under siege at the Alamo. He explained they were told to surrender or “be put to the sword, if the fort is taken.” He answered, “the demand with a cannon shot.”
“I shall never surrender or retreat,” he wrote. “I call on you in the name of Liberty, of patriotism and everything dear to the American character, to come to our aid, with all dispatch. … If this call is neglected, I am determined to sustain myself as long as possible and die like a soldier who never forgets what is due to his own honor and that is his country – victory or death.”
He and at least 186 were killed. Their names are inscribed on the Cenotaph at the Alamo.
Many Texans argue they are currently under siege, including Kinney County Sheriff Brad Coe, who told The Center Square, “We’re experiencing a silent invasion of military age men.”
Texas, which shares the majority of the southern border with Mexico, has borne the brunt of border security policies under President Joe Biden. At least 1.78 million people were apprehended or evaded law enforcement after illegally entering Texas in fiscal 2022.
Kinney County was the first Texas county to declare an invasion on July 5, 2022.
Single, military age men, between the ages of 17 and 45 are illegally entering the U.S., Coe and others in law enforcement say. They’re wearing camouflage and carrying backpacks; many are armed and dangerous, committing robberies and engaging in shootouts with law enforcement, Coe said.
In 2022, Kinney County deputies made 877 arrests, filing 3,057 felony charges. While these numbers are unprecedented, the number who got away are even greater. Nearly 21,500 foreign nationals were detected on cameras making their way through the county on foot, but weren’t apprehended last year. That’s at least seven times the size of the county’s population. Their whereabouts are currently unknown.
Kinney County Attorney Brent Smith, who’s led the call for counties to declare an invasion, argues the Texas Constitution and U.S. Constitution establish authority for Texas to defend itself when the federal government won’t.
A descendent of a Texas Revolutionary War hero, Smith told The Center Square those who fought for Texas independence “paid with their lives at the battles of Gonzales, Goliad, and the Alamo. Their sacrifice made Texas a beacon of liberty to the entire world. As Texans, we owe them everything that we enjoy today.”
“The solution to our border crisis already exists in the Texas and U.S. Constitutions,” he argues. “Our founders were intelligent enough to see the possibility of such a scenario in the future and addressed it. The question is whether our elected officials will govern according to the constitution and preserve our State.”
County judges and commissioners representing at least 42 counties have declared an invasion at the southern border, in Texas and or in their own counties, or expressed support for doing so, citing Mexican cartels waging nontraditional warfare against Texans and Americans, including flooding the country with enough fentanyl to kill billions of people.
One of the first judges to declare an invasion, who’s also a descendent of a Texas Revolutionary War hero, Goliad County Judge Mike Bennett told The Center Square, “We are losing our country. We are losing Texas. Then what do you have left? Nothing.”
About the Author: Bethany Blankley is a writer at the Center Square, Patheos/Hedgerow, political analyst and former press secretary at Capitol Hill / NY / WDC. Follow Bethany on Twitter @BethanyBlankley.