In Texas Border Town, Democratic Officials Are Becoming Republicans

When Travis Roberts, 60, a former antiques importer from Dallas, arrived in town two decades ago, the town was so deserted he said he could buy a house for as little as $2,000. “I bought 39 houses,” he said, smoking a cigarette in the cluttered office space of the largest store in Sanderson, which sells Mexican metalware, ceramics and, for the right price, a dog. Giant metal tyrannosaurus rex. Over the years, he was able to resell all the houses.

“We go to school,” said Mr. Roberts, the shop owner, whose three sons attended Sanderson and then Rice University.

Mr. Roberts, who grew up in the nearby Marathon, complains about the impact the border hardening has had on neighboring communities. “It used to be that you could make them work,” he said of the men from Mexico. “Now using them is against the law, so we only get the bad, and no the good.”

The town is also undergoing another type of change as the economy of West Texas tourist attractions – Big Bend National Park, Marfa’s artsy haven – expands in reach. The local motel has been renovated. Since December, there is even a place to get a cup of coffee other than the gas station.

Jake Harper, 41, a contractor and glassblower who moved from San Antonio with his wife, Hannah, a Pilates teacher and their three children, said: “We love coffee, but we’ve never been. now owns a coffee shop. They started a coffee shop, Ferguson Motors, inside a former Ford dealership. “There is a misconception that borders are dangerous. But this is the safest place. The community is open and dedicated. ”

There are few dissenting voices. Chandler, a part-time pastor and one of Sanderson’s few openly gay residents, said he has spoken out at local meetings, challenging officials over rhetoric about people. emigration that he considers “dehumanized”. But he was mostly alone. In Texas Border Town, Democratic Officials Are Becoming Republicans

Fry Electronics Team

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