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VICTOR JOECKS: ‘Pawn Stars’ tragedy shows why Abbott must secure border

The tragic death of TV star Rick Harrison’s son should steel the spine of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to stop illegal immigration.

See if you can spot the connection between these two seemingly unrelated stories. Last Friday, Adam Harrison, 39, was found dead of an overdose. Adam Harrison is the son of Rick Harrison, who’s part of the hit series “Pawn Stars.”

“Adam died from a fentanyl overdose,” Rick Harrison said in a statement.

On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court said the Biden administration can remove the razor wire that Texas put up to deter illegal immigrants near Eagle Pass, Texas while the dispute makes its way through the courts. The barrier is one part of Abbott’s efforts to stop illegal immigration.

President Joe Biden has shown little interest in doing so. Fox News reported that illegal immigrant encounters topped 300,000 last month. For context, that’s nearly equivalent to the population of Henderson.

It has long been apparent that open borders are Biden’s preferred immigration policy. The results have been devastating. Much of the attention has focused on the hypocrisy of self-proclaimed “sanctuary” cities. Democrats in places such as New York City and Washington, D.C., are begging for relief. Black Democrats in Chicago recently filed a lawsuit over officials transforming their neighborhood park into a shelter for illegals.

But there’s another tragic consequence of leaving the border wide open, and it’s what connects these two stories.

“The fentanyl crisis in this country must be taken more seriously,” Rick Harrison said. “It seems it is just flowing over the borders and nothing is being done about it. We must do better.”

The Harrison family aren’t the only ones experiencing grief like this. Annual deaths from drug overdoses have gone from under 50,000 in 2015 to more than 100,000 last year. The coronavirus lockdowns played a part in the increase, but so did fentanyl. The Centers for Disease Control reported that “fentanyl overdose death rates more than tripled from 2016 to 2021.”

Fentanyl is “50 times more potent than heroin” according to the DEA. It can be mixed with other drugs and even be made to look like medicines such as Percocet and Xanax. Oftentimes those who die from fentanyl overdoses didn’t know they had consumed it.

As The Wall Street Journal reported, Mexican cartels buy chemicals from Chinese companies to make fentanyl. They smuggle it into the country through the porous southern border.

The Supreme Court has long given the federal government wide latitude on immigration, even though “immigration” isn’t in the Constitution. The court has held that regulating immigration is a “fundamental sovereign attribute.” That makes sense.

But with that power comes an obligation. Article IV, Section 4, states: The United States “shall protect” each state “against invasion.”

Millions of illegal immigrants later, the Biden administration isn’t even trying to do that. The Harrison family is representative of the tens of thousands of families who’ve lost loved ones to fentanyl trafficked into the United States from Mexico.

That’s why, as he pledged to do, Abbott should “hold the line.”

Contact Victor Joecks at vjoecks@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-4698. Follow @victorjoecks on X.

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