Follow Us

Appeals court orders Texas to remove buoy barrier in Rio Grande

Texas deployed the barrier as part of Operation Lone Star, its unilateral effort to combat illegal border crossings under GOP Gov. Greg Abbott.

Published: December 1, 2023 6:02pm

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals on Friday upheld a lower court ruling requiring Texas to remove a buoy barrier in the Rio Grande, dealing a blow to Austin's efforts to combat a surge in illegal arrivals from Mexico in the perceived absence of federal aid.

The three-judge panel ruled 2-1 to uphold a lower court decision that found the buoys were illegal, The Hill reported. In September of this year, U.S. District Judge David Ezra ordered the removal of the barrier, though that decision was stayed pending appeal.

Biden-appointed Judge Dana Douglas authored the Friday decision, which concluded that Ezra was correct in assessing "the threat to navigation and federal government operations on the Rio Grande as well as the potential threat to human life the floating barrier created."

Texas deployed the barrier as part of Operation Lone Star, its unilateral effort to combat illegal border crossings under GOP Gov. Greg Abbott. Republican leadership in the state has been highly critical of Washington over its handling of border security and ultimately opted to act on its own.

Ben Whedon is an editor and reporter for Just the News. Follow him on X, formerly Twitter.

The Facts Inside Our Reporter's Notebook

Just the News Spotlight