Texas Attorney General rejects DHS request, denying federal agents access to Shelby Park

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton has firmly denied a federal request for unrestricted access to a border park, escalating tensions between Texas and the Biden administration. This bold move underscores the increasing rift over immigration policies and border control within the United States.

Shelby Park, a public area in Eagle Pass, has become the latest focal point in the ongoing border control saga. In the past, the park served as a central location for migrant crossings. However, under the orders of Governor Greg Abbott, the Texas National Guard has now taken control of the park. As a result, Border Patrol agents are unable to access the site, which was previously utilized for processing migrants.

The Department of Homeland Security, which oversees Border Patrol operations, requested Texas’ compliance by a specific deadline. However, Paxton’s response was firm and unyielding: access denied. He argued that granting DHS access to Shelby Park would essentially transform it into an unauthorized port of entry. Paxton’s stance clearly demonstrates Texas’ dedication to border security and its willingness to challenge federal immigration policies.

In Shelby Park, Texas, the guardsmen have proactively implemented measures to deter illegal crossings. They have constructed barriers and guided migrants towards Mexico, showcasing Texas’ assertive stance on border security. This action aligns with the Texas Department of Public Safety’s recent effort to apprehend migrants on charges of state criminal trespassing.

Texas officials are emphasizing their state’s right to protect its borders, while the Biden administration sees these actions as obstructive. They argue that Texas is impeding federal agents from carrying out their duties, which include patrolling the Rio Grande and assisting distressed migrants. The main point of contention is the division of responsibilities: immigration enforcement is under federal jurisdiction, and Texas officials do not have the authorization or training for such tasks.


The legal landscape surrounding this issue is intricate and constantly changing. Governor Abbott’s recent legislation seeks to give Texas officials the authority to apprehend migrants on state-level charges. However, this law is being contested by the Justice Department. Additionally, the Supreme Court’s recent ruling, which permits Border Patrol to remove razor wire near the Rio Grande, highlights the ongoing legal dispute regarding border control measures.

This standoff goes beyond being a local issue; it serves as a reflection of the broader national conversation on immigration and border security. The White House has been critical of Abbott’s policies, deeming them inhumane. However, Governor Abbott stands firm in his belief that he is protecting his state from what he perceives as an “invasion.” His position has gained the support of Republican governors across the country.

The ongoing disagreement is occurring amidst a surge in migrant crossings at the southern border, with a staggering 302,000 individuals being processed just last month. However, these figures have recently decreased, with U.S. officials attributing it to Mexico’s intensified immigration enforcement efforts and the impact of seasonal trends.

The situation at Shelby Park continues to be a contentious and unresolved matter, which may potentially lead to litigation in federal court. As the debate intensifies, the conflict between state and federal authority regarding immigration and border control is unfolding, influencing the narrative of immigration policy in the United States.

The situation in Shelby Park aligns with the ongoing national dialogue on immigration and border control, highlighting Texas’ resolute stance against federal immigration policies. The resolution of this standoff holds considerable consequences for the future of immigration enforcement and state-federal relations within the United States.

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