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'Blatantly unconstitutional': Local activist, attorney react to Abbott's blocked executive order

1 month 2 weeks 2 days ago Wednesday, August 04 2021 Aug 4, 2021 August 04, 2021 8:25 AM August 04, 2021 in News - Local

Although a federal judge put a temporary block on Gov. Abbott’s order stopping the transportation of migrants, local activists say Valley residents should be concerned if the order were to be enforced again.

"The order itself is blatantly unconstitutional,” said ACLU Texas attorney Bernardo Cruz.

RELATED: Federal judge temporarily blocks Abbott's order allowing troopers to stop vehicles with migrants  

The temporary restraining order by U.S. District Judge Kathleen Cardone will remain in effect until Aug. 13 at 8 a.m. According to court filings, if the restraining order is lifted, it would allow state troopers to stop any vehicle with reasonable suspicion of transporting migrants.

“It is asking and asserting that Texas as a state has authority to basically do immigration enforcement,” Cruz said.

Cruz says the order's language is too broad and could lead to arbitrary detentions. Anyone who lives on the border, migrant or not, could be questioned by police.

"They're going to be pulling over people who are driving older cars or people who have a certain accent or people who look a certain way,” said La Unión del Pueblo Entero activist Dani Marrero Hi.

CHANNEL 5 NEWS reached out to Catholic Charities in McAllen and a spokesperson confirmed they were not impacted by the governor's executive order.

Some activists say local and state leaders in Texas should focus more on mandating people wear face masks and make sure everyone is vaccinated against COVID-19 instead of blaming migrants for the rise in cases.

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