In a new challenge to the federal government’s authority over immigration, Texas lawmakers on Tuesday night gave final approval to a bill that would allow police to arrest migrants who enter the country illegally and let local judges order them to leave the country.
The bill, which Republican Gov. Greg Abbott is expected to sign, would become one of the nation’s strictest immigration laws if allowed to take effect. On Wednesday, Mexico’s government criticized the measure, warning it would result in family separations and racial profiling.
In a rare moment of GOP dissension, one powerful Republican state senator opposed the bill, saying it goes too far. Emotions also ran high in the Texas House, where Democrats spent hours condemning the measure but failed to weaken it before it passed along party lines 83-61. It cleared the Texas Senate last week.
It is unclear when Abbott will sign the bill. He announced Wednesday that he will return to the border over the weekend with former President Donald Trump
Here’s a look at the proposal: