The Texas National Guard has erected two additional miles of border fencing amid ongoing legal battles surrounding the end of Title 42 and an anticipated surge in illegal migration.

The guardsmen stationed in El Paso, Texas, which sits in the western part of the state on the border with Mexico, constructed the barriers and are planning to create more, according to ADN America.

The mayor of El Paso declared a state of emergency earlier in December following the arrival of additional migrants, which has strained the city’s resources. National Guardsmen were subsequently deployed to aiding the flailing local authorities.

A record 2.4 million migrants crossed illegally in fiscal year 2022 for a total of nearly 4 million since President Joe Biden took office. Those figures are expected to rise further still should the government succeed in its efforts to end Title 42.

Title 42 is a public health rule that authorizes the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), working with border authorities, to suspend entry and to swiftly deport migrants if they hail from a nation known to host a communicable disease, i.e., COVID-19. An estimated 2.5 million migrants have been deported under the rule.

The Supreme Court has temporarily ordered that the rule remain in place pending oral arguments scheduled for February 2023, though the court’s decision isn’t expected to come before June. 

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