Lt. Gov. Patrick made the announcement at the Houston Realty Business Coalition breakfast this morning.
AUSTIN – Today, Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick issued the following statement:
“Public safety is government’s first responsibility and there is no greater threat to public safety in Texas right now than the failed, open-border policies of the Biden Administration.
“The cost to Texans of unchecked human trafficking and drug smuggling is staggering. The ancillary cost of rampant crime in our communities is enormous. It is unacceptable that our citizens and our brave Texas Peace Officers are being killed.
“It is for these reasons, and others, that I have prioritized border security since my first session as Lt. Governor.
“Since the 84th Legislative Session, we have increased spending by several billion dollars to provide additional assets to secure our border including manpower, equipment, and even funding to build our own border wall.
“With the influx of illegal immigrants and drugs across our border and our significant increase in funding and personnel to the border, today, I am announcing the creation of the Senate Committee on Border Security. Previously this issue was a part of the Senate Committee on Veteran Affairs and Border Security, which will now be entitled the Senate Committee on Veteran Affairs.
“I have selected members with military experience for the committee since they have the experience and knowledge of operations, strategy, and tactics to best serve. I am naming Sen. Brian Birdwell to serve as Chair, and Sens. Bob Hall and Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa as the other members.
“Sen. Birdwell is a U.S. Army veteran with 20 years of service and retired as a Lt. Colonel. Sen. Birdwell was awarded the Purple Heart and the Legion of Merit for his service to our country.
“Sen. Hall graduated from The Citadel and served in the U.S. Air Force for 5 years. He retired with the rank of Captain.
“Sen. Hinojosa volunteered for the U.S. Marines and is a Vietnam combat veteran. He is a Marine’s Marine and represents a large portion of our southern border.
“The committee will oversee the funding and policies of Texas’ effort to secure our border, and ensure we are maximizing that effort. They will work closely with Gov. Abbott’s office, the Texas Department of Public Safety (DPS), the Texas National Guard and other state agencies.
“Running for Lt. Governor in 2014 and again in 2018, I pledged to fund border security at historic levels. I kept my promise. This year, I approved funding to build the wall. Texas must secure the border because the Biden Administration will not. The creation of the Senate Committee on Border Security will ensure that this remains a top priority of the Texas Senate.”