Opinion | Anti-immigrant stunts won't end Texas' Covid surge

Abbot's new executive order isn't just ineffective — it's probably illegal.

7/30/2021 10:46:00 PM

Opinion | steve_vladeck: If Gov. Abbott is looking for someone to blame for Texas’s latest Covid surge, it might behoove him to find a mirror. - MSNBCDaily

Abbot's new executive order isn't just ineffective — it's probably illegal.

that, he claimed, would help counter the surge.Abbott’s order restricts the “ground transportation of migrants who pose a risk of carrying COVID-19 into Texas communities” by authorizing Texas law enforcement officers to “stop any vehicle upon reasonable suspicion” of violating the executive order.

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Theaccompanying news releasedid not leave the link between the two issues to readers’ imaginations: “The dramatic rise in unlawful border crossings has also led to a dramatic rise in COVID-19 cases among unlawful migrants who have made their way into our state,” Abbott was quoted as saying, “and we must do more to protect Texans from this virus and reduce the burden on our communities.”

If Abbott is looking for someone to blame for Texas’s latest Covid surge, it might behoove him to find a mirror.Abbott’s executive order is, at least publicly, meant to tie Texas’s Covid surge to the Biden administration’s immigration policies. In asecond release issued Thursday headtopics.com

, Abbott was even more direct: “The current crisis at our southern border, including the overcrowding of immigration facilities and the devastating spread of COVID-19 that the influx of non-citizens is causing, is entirely the creation of the Biden Administration and its failed immigration policies.”

There are at least three problems here. First, theactualexecutive order that he signed doesn’t do anything like what the news release claims it does. Second, what little it does do would, if ever enforced, be equal parts unlawful and ineffective. Third, and most significantly, it’s a transparently cynical effort from Abbott to deflect attention away from his responsibility for the renewed surge of Covid cases in Texas — a state in which local governments, public schools and universities are all prohibited from imposing mask mandates or, as of Thursday, requiring vaccinations.

Read more: MSNBC »

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