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Photo: Tamir Kalifa via Getty Images

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) on Wednesday barred people from providing ground transportation to migrants detained by Customs Border Patrol for illegally crossing the border — a move that gives the state's Department of Public Safety (DPS) authority to stop and reroute "any vehicle upon reasonable suspicion" of violating the order.

Why it matters: Abbott cites the recent surge in COVID-19 cases as the basis for the order, though the governor has refused to mandate masks in the state. The move comes amid record crossings at the southern border.

Details: Under the new executive order, DPS can stop, reroute or impound vehicles carrying groups of migrants who "pose a risk of carrying COVID-19 into Texas communities."

  • This applies to migrants who have been detained by CBP for crossing the border illegally or who would have been subject to expulsion under the Title 42 policy, which lets U.S. border officials quickly turn migrant families back to Mexico.

Worth noting: Texas law enforcement is already most likely to search Latinos in police stops, per data analysis conducted by researchers from the Institute for Predictive Analytics in Criminal Justice.

The big picture: Poor conditions in the government's own facilities have encouraged the spread of COVID among migrant children detained in Texas border camps.

Go deeper

Abbott says he'll hire Border Patrol agents on horseback if they're fired

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott on Sunday defended the actions of U.S. Border Patrol agents who charged at Haitian migrants on horseback, blaming the Biden administration for not preventing them from crossing the border.

Why it matters: The Republican governor's remarks on "Fox News Sunday" comes amid increased backlash over the incident, with President Biden saying, "I promise ... those people will pay,” and the Department of Homeland Security launching an investigation.

Photos reportedly show Border Patrol whipping at migrants from horseback

Photo: Paul Ratje/AFP via Getty Images

New photos reportedly show Border Patrol agents whipping at and charging their horses at migrants in Del Rio who were attempting to make their way to an encampment under the international bridge, where thousands of Haitian migrants have sought refuge trying to seek asylum.

Our thought bubble, via Axios' Russell Contreras: The images of Border Patrol agents on horseback charging at Haitian migrants drew an emotional response online since the Border Patrol has a troubled and violent history against communities of color.

Texas border crossing will partially reopen

A Border Patrol vehicle drives along a section of the southern border wall on Sept. 23 in Del Rio, Texas. Photo: Brandon Bell/Getty Images

The border crossing in Del Rio, Texas, where thousands of Haitian migrants arrived in recent weeks, will be partially reopened on Saturday afternoon, U.S. Customs and Border Protection said.

Driving the news: Trade and travel operations at the Del Rio Port of Entry will resume for passenger traffic at 4 p.m. on Saturday and cargo traffic will resume on Monday morning.