The 12 Democratic members of Texas' congressional delegation want their state's attorney general to publicly denounce "lawless" and "potentially volatile groups" patrolling private land along the southern border, the San Antonio Express-News reported
"These lawless militias could worsen an already difficult situation by promoting violence against minors who are seeking refuge and fleeing violent situations in their home countries," the July 30 letter reads.
They further request Attorney General Greg Abbott "clarify the jurisdiction these groups have to patrol" alongside border patrol agents. Abbott is running for governor.
Abbott spokeswoman Laura Bean, told the Express-News the letter was a "partisan political stunt" and suggested the lawmakers "should work with their Republican colleagues to secure federal funding for the state's border security efforts."
"As attorney general, Greg Abbott calls on congressional Democrats to immediately support federal funding for the National Guard and the Texas Department of Public Safety — which have been deployed to secure the border because the federal government failed to do its job," she added.
The lawmakers' letter is the latest in an ongoing campaign by Texas Democrats calling on Abbott to denounce the militia and citizen border groups.
"Republicans need to stop the rhetoric, this is no longer about fringe groups and their imprint on an arcane Republican Party Platform, it is about children’s lives and the future of Texas,” Texas Democratic Party Communications Director Emmanuel Garcia said in a July 9 statement
Garcia followed up this week with another release demanding Abbott join other officials in chastising the groups.
"Local and federal officials have strongly rebuked these groups’ actions. The dog whistles were heard, Republicans’ irresponsible vile rhetoric did its part, now Texas faces the consequences," he said in a July 28 statement
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