Tag Archives: border wall

Abbott kicks around another political football

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Oh, my goodness, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott. You have become such a disappointment to many of us you took an oath to serve.

You declare your intention to build a wall along our state’s southern border. You blast the Biden administration to smithereens over what you call a “failed border policy.” You decline to meet with Vice President Kamala Harris during her brief visit to El Paso to discuss border security issues with local officials.

Donald Trump visiting Texas border with Gov. Greg Abbott | The Texas Tribune

Then you slobber all over yourself and all over the disgraced former president of the U.S.A. when he comes a callin’ to — that’s right — level criticism of the Biden administration.

You and POTUS 45 are on the same silly song sheet on so many misbegotten matters.

Governor, you need to put partisan politics aside and think of the greater good … for once.  Your politics-playing over this border matter simply makes me sick, not to mention the way you fawned over the visit of an individual who no longer has any say over federal policy — and whose company has just been indicted on criminal charges.

POTUS 45 lost the 2020 election, governor. You know that, yes? President Biden inherited a border crisis from his predecessor. Has he done well in bringing it under control? I agree that Joe Biden can do better and I am going to give him the benefit of hope that he will do better. I mean, he’s only six months into a presidency fraught with many existential problems that need everyone’s concern.

The border is one of them.

Last time I checked, Texas is still one of 50 states governed by politicians with varying degrees of competence. Gov. Abbott, I know you do not need to be told this, but good governance is a team sport. It requires cooperation at all levels of government. The feds rely on states to assist when they can and vice versa.

How about stepping up your good-governance game, governor? You need to be part of a team working toward a common goal, which is to secure our border.

How much will it cost, governor?

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

The individual who preceded Joe Biden as president of the United States used to proclaim that “Mexico is going to pay for the wall.”

It didn’t happen. It won’t happen. Not ever.

Now we have the governor of Texas, Greg Abbott, declaring his intention to build a wall along the state’s lengthy border with Mexico. He isn’t making the same preposterous claim that the ex-POTUS did. However, we need some specifics on this matter if it manages to survive the expected challenges to whether it is even constitutional for a state to assume a federal responsibility.

Texas border wall may not be feasible, or even legal | The Texas Tribune

How much will it cost, Gov. Abbott?

You see, the U.S. Constitution requires in the Fifth Amendment that the government provide “just compensation” for any private property seized for public use. Texas’s share of public land comprises a tiny fraction of its total land mass along the border, which will require the state to pay a whole lot of money it takes from private ownership. So, we have that expense.

As for the rest of the price tag, which would be bound to skyrocket as the state grapples with ways to erect a secure border, well, we haven’t heard a word from Gov. Abbott on how much that might cost you and me.

The state’s economy happens to be performing quite well in the wake of this COVID pandemic. However, we shouldn’t be asked to spend an unspecified amount of money to seal off our southern border from “hordes of criminals” who, in my view, do not exist.

Border wall? Not so sure, governor

By John Kanelis / johnkanelis_92@hotmail.com

Call him the latest incarnation of the “Macho Man.”

Gov. Greg Abbott thinks he is going to take matters into his own hands by ensuring that Texas builds a wall along its entire border with Mexico. The details are to come later. If ever.

This one gives me trouble.

Why? Because border security is a national issue, not one left to states to determine individually. There well might be a constitutional issue involved with Texas deciding to go it alone in fencing off the state from its southern neighbor.

Texas governor says Texas will build its own border wall, leaves the details to later (yahoo.com)

I get that Abbott wants to arrest criminals who come here to do bad things. He made that point clear and in fact I happen to agree with that part of Gov. Macho Man’s proclamation. I don’t want to see the state infested with — in the words of the former POTUS — “rapists, murderers, drug dealers” either. Then again, there isn’t much evidence that such an infestation is occurring anyway with refugees fleeing their home countries in search of a better life in the Land of Opportunity.

Yahoo News reports: The ACLU of Texas disagreed. Abbott’s plan undermines the federal “right to seek asylum by jailing those fleeing danger and punishing them for seeking refuge in the U.S,” said ACLU staff attorney Kate Huddleston. “In this plan, Abbott is yet again scapegoating immigrants in an effort to distract from his own failures in governing and managing actual crises in Texas — like the historic winter storm that led to the deaths of more than 150 Texans — with cruel results.”

Abbott, of course, blames President Biden for the border crisis. Imagine that, eh? The governor well might seek to succeed the president in 2024, so he needs a campaign issue on which to run. It strains credulity to believe that none of this existed during Biden’s Republican predecessor’s term in office. It certainly did. Where was the criticism then? Hmm, governor?

Gov. Macho Man will need to strap on his flak vest and helmet as he takes incoming criticism from those who are going to question the wisdom of usurping what looks to be a federal job.

Schumer lures Trump into a shutdown trap

Donald Trump sought to negotiate a deal today with Congress two top Democrats: House Speaker-to-be Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer.

What the president managed to do, though, is box himself into a corner. He did so all by himself. With just a little prompting from Schumer.

To which I say: Wow, man!

Schumer kept resisting any notion that the Senate would vote to give Trump approval for $5 billion to build a wall along our southern border. That prompted Trump to do an amazing thing.

He took ownership of a potential government shutdown if he doesn’t get his way on wall financing. Yep. That’s right. The president of the United States has seized the issue all for himself. He would be glad to shut down the government if Congress refuses to spend the money he wants to build the wall.

Oh, is Mexico going to pay for it? For any portion of the wall. Hah!

Congress and the president have a few days to work out something to keep the government functioning in its entirety.

The meeting at the White House didn’t go well. Trump stormed out, tossing papers. Pelosi and Schumer, meanwhile, have sent a signal that the president is going have to deal with an entirely different Congress — specifically the House — than the government branch that served as his lapdog for the first two years of Trump’s term.

Do you get the feeling that we’re heading for some wild water? We had all better hold on with both hands.

Donald Trump: man of danger


Donald Trump came to Texas this week and, according to the man himself, thrust himself into harm’s way by speaking the truth about illegal immigration.

Well, since he’s the presumed frontrunner — for the moment — for the Republican Party presidential nomination next year, his visit requires a brief comment.


It meant nothing in the nation’s ongoing battle against illegal immigration.

Trump’s appearance was just for show. That’s understandable, though. Political candidates do these things on occasion. He swept into Laredo, bounded off his big ol’ jet wearing a ball cap emblazoned with “Making America Great Again.” He said he’s the only candidate speaking the truth about illegal immigration.

He offered zero specifics about what he intends to do about illegal immigration, although he has said he would build a wall to seal off our southern border to protect us against the flood of murderers, rapists and drug dealers who are pouring into the United States en masse.

I’m wondering, though: Is Trump going to make a similar campaign splash in, say, Buffalo, Detroit or Bellingham, Wash., cities that sit on our border with Canada? Let’s seal off our northern border as well, while we’re at it.

As the Texas Tribune reported, the brief fling in Laredo was long on sizzle and short on substance.

He said: “I’ll take jobs back from China, I’ll take jobs back from Japan … The Hispanics are going to get those jobs, and they’re going to love Trump.” There’s that third-person reference again.

According to The Trib: “The spectacle reached its apex when he held court with a crush of media at the border following a roughly half-hour closed-door meeting with law enforcement officials. Against the backdrop of a line of trucks waiting to enter the country, Trump regaled reporters with a string of boisterous predictions — that he would not only win the GOP nomination, but would also take the Hispanic vote — and vague prescriptions for the issue that brought him here: illegal immigration.”

This event kind of reminded me of the time then-Texas Attorney General Jim Mattox traipsed through the mud in Matamoros, Mexico, in the late 1980s after a University of Texas student was killed. Mattox, a Democrat, wanted to make a grand show of how he would root out the killers and bring them to justice. That’s all fine, except for this minor detail: The Texas AG has virtually zero criminal jurisdiction; the office deals almost exclusively with civil matters.

But, hey, it made for great photo ops.

So did Trump’s appearance in Laredo. That’s it.