HOUSTON, Texas–Governor Rick Perry is working with Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) to identify options that can immediately address the Texas border crisis. Earlier today Gov. Perry said Texas doesn’t have “the resources, nor the manpower to be able to do that (secure the border) for the 1,200 miles. If we did, we would.”
Several state legislators and Sen. Dan Patrick are quoting DPS director, Colonel Steve McCraw, as saying it would cost Texas taxpayers approximately $1.3 million per week to effectively secure the border between Texas and Mexico. Sen. Patrick, who is the Republican nominee for Lt. Governor, has called upon Gov. Perry, Lt. Governor David Dewhurst, and House Speaker Joe Straus to authorize this spending through the end of the year so that it can then be addressed in the next legislative session.
“The issue here is inadequate federal resources on the border,” said Perry’s Press Secretary, Lucy Nashed. “We are working with the Department of Public safety to identify options that can be taken immediately to address this crisis. But the bottom line is that a special session would not change the root of this problem, which is that the federal government is failing at this critical responsibility and leaving our border vulnerable and porous.”
“This is a federal issue under federal jurisdiction,” Nashed continued, “and while we will continue to commit resources to keep Texas communities safe, the ultimate solution needs to come from Washington, D.C.”
The apparent obstacle to the moving forward on this funding seems to be coming from House Speaker Joe Straus. Lt. Gov. Dewhurst has long called for a multi-month surge to again demonstrate Texas’ ability to close the border. This morning Nashed stated the Governor’s support of this as well. “Gov. Perry has also signed on to a letter with Lt. Gov. Dewhurst,” Nashed continued, “directing DPS to conduct a border surge operation in the coming months. This letter is awaiting approval from Speaker Straus.”
Breitbart Texas reached out to Speaker Straus’ office for a comment on this issue. No response has been received as of this posting.
State Representative Debbie Riddle (R-Tomball) discussed her interview with NPR this morning with Breitbart Texas. In the interview she broke the issue down to a basic level. She asked the NPR interviewer if he locks the doors on his house. Of course, he said yes so she asked him, “Why? For Security?” Again his response was yes.
She then asked if the President has locks on the doors of the White House and if he had armed security to protect him and his family. Again the answer was yes. She then asked the interviewer if his doors were knocked down and the locks were broken if he would go to bed before the doors and locks were fixed. He said he would absolutely fix the doors and locks before going to bed.
“To do less for the people of Texas,” Riddle said, “is showing total disregard, disrespect, and contempt.”
“There are two main ways for the needed money to be released for DPS to fully secure the border. One is a Special Session,” she explained, “and the other is with the LBB (Legislative Budget Board) including the Speaker and four members of the House along with the Lt. Gov. and four members of the Senate.”
“With three votes from each side,” Riddle continued, “they can take money from other agencies and appropriate it to DPS – that money will be restored next session. To go into Rainy Day Fund takes a Special Session.”
“We need to ask the LBB, the Speaker and Lt. Gov to move quickly and do the job” she concluded. “I’m thinking the appetite for a Special Session is not there. Bottom line we must get the doors repaired and he locks on he doors working again. Nobody should sleep until that is done.”
The petition being promoted by Texas grassroots activists calling on Gov. Perry to convene a special session of the Texas Legislature to deal with the Texas border crisis is now rapidly approaching 4,000 signatures. The petition drive began on Saturday evening during the Father’s Day holiday weekend.
Bob Price is a staff writer and a member of the original Breitbart Texas team. Follow him on Twitter @BobPriceBBTX.