(The Hill) – The White House on Wednesday slammed Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) for the delays at the state’s border with Mexico after he ordered state troopers to step up truck inspections.
White House press secretary Jen Psaki said the delays from the inspections are causing rising prices and “significant disruptions” to supply chains.
“Governor Abbott’s unnecessary and redundant inspections of trucks transiting ports of entry between Texas and Mexico are causing significant disruptions to the food and automobile supply chains, delaying manufacturing, impacting jobs, and raising prices for families in Texas and across the country,” Psaki said in a statement.
State troops are inspecting commercial vehicles, which have already been searched by federal officers, crossing northbound into Texas, a directive Abbott implemented after Biden announced Title 42 would be rescinded earlier this month.
Psaki said that the delays truckers are facing have exceeded five hours at some border crossings and commercial traffic has dropped by 60% at the southern border.
“The continuous flow of legitimate trade and travel and CBP’s [Customs and Border Protection] ability to do its job should not be obstructed. Governor Abbott’s actions are impacting people’s jobs, and the livelihoods of hardworking American families,” she said.
On Tuesday, no commercial vehicles crossed the Pharr-Reynosa International Bridge, which is the busiest bridge in the area, because truckers on the Mexico side are blocking traffic in protest, The Texas Tribune reported.
Title 42, which will officially end on May 23, was first imposed under the Trump administration in the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic and allowed migrants to be expelled at the border, blocking them from trying to obtain asylum.
Abbott’s order cited “cartels that smuggle illicit contraband and people across our southern border” as justification for the state trooper inspections, Reuters reported.
The delays at the border come as the first bus of migrants arrived in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday morning after Abbott directed the Texas Division of Emergency Management to bring migrants in Texas to the nation’s capital last week.
The White House dismissed Abbott’s plans to send migrants to Washington last week as a “publicity stunt.”