Kansas Legislature Overrides Dem Gov’s Veto, Approves Millions To Help Texas Fight Illegal Immigration

Republicans in Kansas mustered supermajority votes to override their governor’s veto of millions earmarked for deployment of national guard troops to the southern border.

GOP lawmakers in the Kansas house and senate chambers voted Monday to override Democrat Gov. Laura Kelly’s veto of $15.7 million appropriated for Kansas National Guard troops to assist Texas in its effort to control the southern border, according to the legislative filing. The move marks the latest by red states trying to help Texas Republican Gov. Greg Abbott’s campaign to take on the border crisis, in lieu of relying solely on federal immigration authorities.

“Every state in the nation is a border state at this point,” Kansas Senate President Ty Masterson said. “Let Kansas be a part of it. It’s not much short of an invasion. We’re a little isolated up here, but it’s coming.”

The final vote tally was 28-12 in the Senate and 84-41 in the House.

However, under Kansas law, the governor serves as commander in chief of the state’s national guard forces, making Kelly the final authority on whether national guard troops will be deployed, according to the Kansas Reflector

Kansas Republican leaders, for their part, are using the momentum of the veto override to push the governor in deploying the troops.

“Now, it is up to the governor to stop making excuses and come to the aid of our citizens by sending the Kansas National Guard to the Texas border and in doing so, help stem the flow of the devastating consequences associated with the Biden Administration’s failures,” Masterson said in a social media post.

Should Kansas deploy national guard troops to the Texas-Mexico border, it would be the latest in a growing list of GOP states that have already done so.

Since 2021, a total of 14 GOP-led states have sent troops to the southern border in solidarity with Texas: Florida, Arkansas, Iowa, Idaho, North Dakota, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Ohio, South Dakota, South Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, Wyoming, and West Virginia, according to a list compiled by Newsweek.

Their support for Texas follows an ongoing illegal immigration crisis in the country. Roughly six million migrant encounters have occurred at the southern border since President Joe Biden assumed office in 2021, Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data reveal.

Disputes have emerged between Texas and the federal government over border enforcement authority. The Department of Justice recently sued the state over its law that allows state officials to arrest foreign nationals living in the U.S. illegally, arguing such responsibility is reserved for federal authorities only.

In 2021, Abbott launched Operation Lone Star, a joint effort by the Texas Department of Public Safety and the Texas Military Department to mitigate the crisis.

The campaign has so far resulted in over 509,500 illegal immigrant apprehensions and more than 42,100 criminal arrests, according to the latest figures released by Abbott’s office. Operation Lone Star has also successfully transported tens of thousands of illegal migrants to various sanctuary cities across the country.

Gov. Kelly’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Daily Caller News Foundation.

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