Border Tactics & Immigration Reform: NM Rep. Gabe Vasquez vs. Challenger Yvette Herrell

U.S. Representative Gabe Vasquez, and his competitor for New Mexico's 2nd Congressional District, former office holder Yvette Herrell, approach immigration, the border issues, and what is happening in Texas, in relation to the border, with distinctly different approaches.

New Mexico's Rep. Gabe Vasquez called out Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s "reckless border tactics" following the Supreme Court’s ruling to temporarily uphold Texas Senate Bill 4. The bill gives local law enforcement the ability to arrest migrants and allows state judges to impose criminal penalties and issue deportation orders. The order allows law enforcement to act according to the legislation until which time the Supreme Court renders a final ruling.

Once again, we're confronted with the consequences of Governor Abbott's reckless actions. The Supreme Court's decision to uphold Texas’ law granting local police the authority to arrest people suspected of being illegal immigrants is deeply troubling.This was a dangerous overreach, undermining federal authority and putting vulnerable people at risk, especially Hispanic residents and citizens who constitute the largest minority in Texas. The issue here is not just about immigration enforcement but also about racial profiling, where all Hispanic people, including border residents who are American citizens, can be unfairly targeted.

I am committed to defending our American values to protect everyone's safety and rights, and I'm glad to see the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals stop this law from going into effect while we wait for the final decision, said Rep Vasquez in a press release.

Vasquez has called on Governor Abbott before to work with him on common-sense, bipartisan solutions to the real challenges our nation faces at the U.S.-Mexico border and in our long-broken immigration system.

Last fall, Vasquez introduced a package of immigration and border solution bills to mitigate the crisis. "We've seen that Congress has not been able to accomplish comprehensive immigration reform for the better part of three decades," Vasquez said to KOAT News concerning his proposed legislation at a Santa Teresa Border event. "And we have to take some type of approach to help to solve both; some of the issues and the challenges at our border, but also our immigration issues all across the country."

Vasquez's proposed bills will punish smugglers and cartels behind violent crimes.

"If you are found guilty of committing that crime under my legislation, you would have a 10-year penalty tacked on to your existing sentence because we want to make sure that these folks are held accountable," said Vasquez.

Another bill being proposed would protect detainees at migrant detention centers. This would keep a record of any poor living conditions that will be reported back to Congress.

"In Otero County, we have seen some of the abuses, but we have not been able to properly catalog what is actually happening in these detention centers. We need to stop those abuses, we need to have good oversight of any federally funded or run detention center in this country," said Vasquez.

Vasquez claims his unique background, growing up on the borderlands, positions him to lead critical conversations on immigration reform in Congress. As the first in his family to become an American citizen, Vasquez is committed to addressing the pressing challenges faced by border communities, migrants and border security personnel per a recent press statement.

Gabe Vaquez's votes related to immigration reform to date can be found at…

Human trafficking and loss of life are just some of the situations Yvette Herrell hears about on both sides of the border as she hit the campaign trail according to her campaign. She says she sees no action being taken to address real solutions at present.

"What's sad is both President Biden and Congressman Vasquez have the tools available to them," Herrell said recently in an interview with KOAT News. "We have the 'Remain in Mexico' we could reinstate. We could stop 'Catch and Release.' We could equip border patrol with the resources that they need."

Former representative and Republican candidate Yvette Herrell backed Abbott's law and sent this statement as reported by KOAT News in response to the Supreme Court stay of the law, "I applaud the Supreme Court's decision to allow Texas to enforce order at our border and hope the 5th Circuit court concurs soon."

Yvette Herrells record on immigration votes can be viewed at…

Yvette Herrell is unapposed in the upcoming Republican primary, and Gabe Vasquez is unapposed in the Democratic primary. Both will face off in the November General election for the seat in New Mexico for Congressional District 2.

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