SAN ANTONIO — Congressman Joaquin Castro has heard the stories and allegations of inhumane treatment along the southern Texas border.
And he’s seen the video and pictures of floating buoys and razor wire.
In the coming days, though, he will take it all in with his own eyes.
The Democrat from San Antonio is leading a Congressional delegation to Eagle Pass, Texas -- where it’s all taking place.
“This is something that was completely avoidable,” Congressman Castro told us on Inside Texas Politics. “It’s something that many of us warned about in the last few weeks when Gov. Abbott made the decision to put these drowning devices in the river.”
At least one body has been discovered stuck in the buoys installed in the Rio Grande.
But Texas authorities say it appears that person, who has yet to be identified, drowned upstream and floated into the barriers.
The Department of Justice is also suing the state, trying to force it to remove the barriers.
“I do think they’ll be able to get an injunction because Gregg Abbott doesn’t have authority over an international body of water, just like the Governor of California doesn’t have authority over the Pacific Ocean,” said the Democrat.
While in Eagle Pass, federal lawmakers also plan to meet with local leaders and community members to discuss Operation Lone Star’s impact.
The full list of attendees is still being finalized, but it will include members of Congress from Texas and at least one other state.
In the meantime, Castro is hopeful President Joe Biden will say something.
“I still think it’s important for the President of the United States to be able to forcefully condemn this kind of behavior, this kind of conduct,” Castro said. “The words of a President matter. And they make a difference on an issue. They make a difference about how Americans see issues.”