Texas Gov.-Elect Greg Abbott said Sunday he is more than ready to show how President Barack Obama's immigration order is an "assault" on the constitution and will bring further financial harm to his state, and that the lawsuit that he filed against the action will stand
in court as a result.
"You all saw more than a 1,000 people crossing our border each and every day," Abbott told NBC "Meet the Press" host Chuck Todd of the wave of immigrants who flooded Texas. "Texas has come out of pocket to the tune of more than $100 million in law enforcement, education and healthcare because of what has happened."
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Further, Abbott, who is now the attorney general of Texas, said that memos from the Obama administration's agencies indicate even further problems coming from the most recent presidential order. Sixteen other states, mostly from the South, have joined in the lawsuit.
Many of the children who came across in this year's flood of immigrants are in Texas schools, said Abbott, and there are some people who came across who are accessing health services.
He said he doesn't know the raw numbers but he does know the fact, "and that is Texas has incurred taxpayer dollars out of pocket as a result of the prior executive order. It's also been stated by members of the Obama administration that this new executive order will lead to same results."
But the financial harm isn't the real reason for the lawsuit, Abbott insisted.
"It's the way that Texas has been impacted that gives us standing," said Abbott. "What we're suing for is actually the greater harm, and that is harm to the constitution by empowering the president of the United States to enact legislation on his own without going through Congress."
"It's the Constitution itself that is under assault by the president of the United States by this executive order," Abbott added.
Abbott said he appreciates Texas' tradition of uniting the Hispanic culture with Texas, and in fact, his own wife will be the state's first-ever Hispanic first lady.
"But remember this, there is a reason why people come from across the world to the United States and that is because of the power of what the Constitution has enabled this country to be," Abbott said. "It's the Constitution itself that is under assault."
Meanwhile, legal immigration has been "great for America," said Abbott, but insisted Congress and the president need to figure out a way to improve the immigration system and to secure the border.
In other discussions, Abbott said he does not have a favorite among Texas' native sons who are considering races for the presidency in 2016.
Those candidates could include outgoing Gov. Rick Perry and Texas Sen. Ted Cruz, as well as Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, both of whom were born in Texas.
"I will be strongly supportive of the Republican nominee," said Abbott, but "I'm staying out of the primary."
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