Republicans from all over the country are throwing their weight behind Texas Governor Greg Abbott in his standoff with the federal government over the border—but it doesn’t seem like they’ve entirely thought the situation through.
At least 25 Republican governors have declared their support for Abbott, including Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey, and Oklahoma Governor Kevin Stitt, the last of whom is flirting with the idea of telling Oklahoma’s National Guard to defy the federal government’s orders if it comes down to it.
Many Republican governors have sent troops down to Texas over the last few months, to help Abbott with what he’s calling his “Operation Lone Star.” But on Thursday, Stitt took things to the next level when questioned by Fox News’s Steve Doocy.
“Have you thought this through? If you send your Oklahoma National Guard down there, and a bunch of other states send them down there, all Joe Biden has to do is federalize all of them. Next thing you know, they’re doing essentially support work for the Border Patrol, who are down there right now just trying to process the invasion of migrants. Your National Guard could be working for Joe Biden,” theorized Doocy.
But Stitt didn’t waver, questioning instead the military’s ultimate allegiance.
“I’ve been on the border, I’ve talked to the border agents. Even the border agents themselves are scratching their heads, but these are good Americans, and they’re trying to obey their boss—but they don’t agree with that policy either,” Stitt began.
“Of course, the National Guard soldiers are Texans and Oklahomans and Tennessee folks. These are just Americans, and they don’t like what’s going on. So you would really be putting our soldiers in a tough, tough situation to protect their states against fentanyl deaths and illegal immigrants and terrorists, in a lot of cases, just to appease some administration that has a political agenda,” the Oklahoma governor continued, completely ignoring the fact that it would be entirely up to the states as to whether or not they put their National Guard in such a precarious situation.
“That’s the only possible explanation,” he added.
The feud between Abbott and Biden escalated on Monday, following a Supreme Court decision that sided 5–4 with Biden, ruling that Texas had overstepped its authority by erecting concertina wire fences along the Rio Grande section of the U.S.-Mexico border, which effectively prevented the U.S. border patrol from doing their job.
Since then, Abbott has declared the influx of immigrants across the border an “invasion”—a status that Abbott claimed supersedes federal mandates—and issued a statement on the state’s constitutional right to defend itself. State officials have also continued to erect the fences and claimed Texas’s legal battle over the issue isn’t over.