County Judge Richard Cortez of the Hidalgo County Commissioners Court in Texas has issued a statement telling the Biden administration to stop releasing COVID-19 positive illegal immigrants into his community.
The statement reads, “We have been doing well as a community in slowing the spread of this deadly virus. But ill-conceived policies by both the federal and state governments are beginning to have serious consequences on Hidalgo County. I call on federal immigration officials to stop releasing infected migrants into our community.”
Cortez added that his county faces “a potential crisis because of the federal policy of releasing infected migrants into our community.”
In commenting on reports that federal agents released COVID-19 positive immigrants as a result of their positive test and illness, Cortez told CBS affiliate KTVT on July 28, “I call on federal immigration officials to stop releasing infected migrants into our community and am further calling on Governor Abbott to return to Hidalgo County the safety tools he took away that would help us slow the spread of this disease. This is unacceptable.”
Hidalgo County is one of many border counties where the administration has allowed lots of illegal immigrants into the United States. Approximately 50,000 illegal immigrants have been allowed to remain in the country without being assigned a court date. Furthermore, the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency (ICE) has documented approximately 21,000 COVID-19 cases in federal detention facilities.
Cortez also contacted Republican Governor Greg Abbott about local “safety tools,” such as mask laws. In May, Gov. Abbott issued a Texas executive order prohibiting counties and local governments from adopting decrees prohibiting mask-wearing, including in public schools.
Abbott wrote regarding the executive order, “The Lone Star State continues to defeat COVID-19 through the use of widely-available vaccines, antibody therapeutic drugs, and safe practices utilized by Texans in our communities.”
“Texans, not the government, should decide their best health practices, which is why masks will not be mandated by public school districts or government entities. We can continue to mitigate COVID-19 while defending Texans’ liberty to choose whether or not they mask up,” he added.