Texas DPS Defends the Border; CBP Helps Migrants Enter

Parsing Immigration Policy, Episode 114

By Mark Krikorian and Todd Bensman on July 20, 2023

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Listen to "Texas DPS Defends the Border; CBP Helps Migrants Enter" on Spreaker.


Conflict has erupted at the Texas-Mexico border between two different arms of law enforcement – Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). CBP has been instructed by the Biden administration to bring migrants they encounter into the country, after which they are released with a notice to appear, and then put on a bus to an American city of their choosing, essentially assisting migrants in their illegal entry into the U.S. Texas DPS has taken border enforcement into its own hands, physically blocking migrants from entering along the Mexican border with Texas and arresting illegal migrants for trespassing when they cross.

To discuss this “border cold war”, Todd Bensman, the Center for Immigration Studies’ Texas-based senior national security fellow, joins this week’s episode of Parsing Immigration Policy. He shares what he saw firsthand during his visit to Eagle Pass, Texas and the cross-border town of Piedras Negras, Mexico. Bensman explains that migrants will call out to Border Patrol for assistance when stopped by Texas DPS, as they are almost guaranteed entry to the U.S. once in CBP custody. Bensman points out the irony of the situation – “Not so long ago, immigrants trying to cross illegally would hide from the Border Patrol, but now they’re sort of like the saviors.”

In his closing commentary, Mark Krikorian, executive director of the Center and host of Parsing Immigration Policy, discusses a British government plan, that is on its way to becoming law, to deter illegal asylum seekers. Similar in many ways to Trump’s Remain in Mexico policy, the Illegal Immigration Bill would ensure that illegal immigrants could not use asylum as a pretext for entering the country. Instead of being released in Britain, they would be sent to Rwanda to apply for asylum where they could settle or sent to another safe third country.


Mark Krikorian is the Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies.


Todd Bensman is the Senior National Security Fellow at the Center for Immigration Studies.


Video: A Cold Border War Breaks Out Between Abbott’s Texas and Biden’s White House

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Intro Montage

Voices in the opening montage:

  • Sen. Barack Obama at a 2005 press conference.
  • Sen. John McCain in a 2010 election ad.
  • President Lyndon Johnson, upon signing the 1965 Immigration Act.
  • Booker T. Washington, reading in 1908 from his 1895 Atlanta Exposition speech.
  • Laraine Newman as a "Conehead" on SNL in 1977.
  • Hillary Clinton in a 2003 radio interview.
  • Cesar Chavez in a 1974 interview.
  • House Speaker Nancy Pelosi speaking to reporters in 2019.
  • Prof. George Borjas in a 2016 C-SPAN appearance.
  • Sen. Jeff Sessions in 2008 comments on the Senate floor.
  • Charlton Heston in "Planet of the Apes".
Topics: Texas