Media Contact

Matt Levin, ACLU of Texas, 772-529-4365, [email protected]


June 16, 2021

HOUSTON — Gov. Greg Abbott, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Speaker Dade Phelan announced at a press conference today a plan to build a Texas-funded border wall and to increase the number of arrests of people crossing the border. Their plan will undermine the right to asylum while building more border walls, divesting Texans of their land and imperiling some of the most precious ecosystems in the country.

The following quote can be attributed to David Donatti, staff attorney at the ACLU of Texas:

“Gov. Abbott, Lt. Gov. Patrick, and House Speaker Phelan plan to revive the most heinous and harmful policies and political theater of the Trump administration. In doing so, they are asserting groundless and white supremacist talking points about an ‘invasion,’ and through their rhetoric and proposed action are the ones threatening our homes and communities.

In reality, Abbott’s proposal could tear families apart at the border and allow law enforcement to terrorize people arriving in the United States in search of safety and refuge. The announcement shows how little Abbott and his cohorts care about fellow Texans. He repeats demonstrably false lies about an ‘emergency’ while mismanaging and making it more difficult to address actual crises like the state’s failing power grid. Even more brazen, he’s asking Texans to give up their homes for a border wall, draining state coffers dedicated to responding to natural disasters, and soliciting donations from non-Texans to finance the border wall boondoggle. The proposal will fail, but not without causing significant damage to Texans in the process.”