On Super Tuesday, Texas hopefuls and lawmakers made immigration a central issue in their campaigns. As the situation on the Texas-Mexico border deteriorates with continual violence and Unaccompanied Alien Minors showing up in unprecedented numbers, voters of the Lone Star State are looking for substantive solutions. Federal inaction on immigration forced the state to allot $800 Million of its own money toward improving border security in 2016, which pinches taxpayer pockets to fund both federal and state measures on immigration.
When polling locations opened, Texas Governor Greg Abbott took to Twitter to encourage voters to choose candidates who will “ban sanctuary cities [and] secure the border.” Governor Abbott’s ardent calls to secure the border and implement meaningful immigration reform have become a trademark of his freshman term.
In addition to action taken by the governor, today’s primary is the first presidential contest held under the state’s new voter ID laws. In addition to being registered to vote, Texans now must show a valid ID in order to cast a ballot, a measure enacted to cut down on voter fraud, including preventing illegal immigrants and others who are constitutionally ineligible from voting.
In the State House race, primary challengers against Speaker Joe Straus (R-121) are also throwing immigration reform into the spotlight by claiming that his failure to act on sanctuary cities led to the killing of a young man last year by a criminal illegal alien. While Speaker Straus and his allies dismiss the attacks as baseless and “deplorable,” the issue still casts light on the critical issue of the danger posed by criminal illegal aliens in the state.