Thank you for the opportunity to testify in support of House Bill 1600, which would create a felony for those who illegally enter Texas via an international border. My name is Joshua Treviño, and I am the Chief of Intelligence and Research at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, a nonprofit and nonpartisan research institution in Austin, Texas. In my role, much of my work focuses on the violence in Mexico, and the reclamation of Texas’s sovereignty under the Constitution. The bottom line on HB 1600 is this: it is a good bill, a Constitutional bill, and a necessary bill for the defense of Texas against the state-cartel nexus that increasingly controls Mexico. That Mexican state-cartel collusion, on which we have written in depth, conducts a deadly export trade, trafficking in fentanyl, corruption, and worst of all, literally millions of fellow human beings who are held in de facto servitude by them — not just in Mexico, but in the United States itself. The federal government, which ought to be the first line of defense for our communities against these predations, has effectively abdicated its obligation to do so. It is therefore time for Texas to step up.