A federal judge is ordering the State of Texas to effectively remove its floating border barrier from the Rio Grande River.
Over the summer, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott installed a line of massive orange buoys along the Eagle Pass section of the river, a point at which the Rio Grande spans 1,000 feet, in hopes of curbing illegal crossings. As of July, Eagle Pass had the second highest number of border crossings this fiscal year, coming in at roughly 270,000 encounters.
But U.S. District Judge David Ezra is calling the buoys a safety risk that obstructs river navigation in violation of federal law. He says the buoys don’t have to be removed entirely but must be moved to the riverbank by September 15th.
Ezra’s preliminary injunction sides with a lawsuit brought by the Biden administration. But Texas promises to appeal, with Governor Abbott saying, “Texas is rightfully stepping up to do the job that Biden should have been doing all along.”