Dem trenches are asking the White House for help with immigrants
Dem trenches are asking the White House for help with immigrants

Dem trenches are asking the White House for help with immigrants

“We need help. We need the federal government, the state government, to play a role,” Adams told reporters Tuesday. “This is a humanitarian crisis, man-made.”

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, also a Democrat, said last week she met with officials from the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies “and made it clear” they needed a plan to help.

“We need federal support, resources, communication and cooperation,” she said. “And that has to happen soon.” But that can only happen when the city submits a funding request to the Federal Office of Disaster Management.

A group of migrants walk from the Immigrant Resource Center to a nearby mall in search of food, September 19, 2022 in San Antonio, Texas. | Jordan Vonderhaar/Getty Images

The problem with Republican governors moving immigrants to Democratic strongholds was highlighted after GOP Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis flew dozens of Venezuelan asylum seekers to Martha’s Vineyard, the nation’s top summer vacation spot.

But Abbott has spent millions of dollars on immigrants in his state to move to Democratic cities since April. He sent about 2,500 to NYC, more than 800 to Chicago, and about 10,000 to Washington, DC, including several buses. stored right in front of Vice President Kamala Harris’ residence in the Marine Corps.

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Abbott’s move has strained resources and sparked outrage from city leaders, who say the Texas GOP governor and DeSantis are using immigrants as political leverage. Republican governors, both running for re-election this year, say they are trying to draw attention to the Biden administration’s border policy — but Democratic city leaders say the traffic is causing a humanitarian crisis.

“It’s hard to predict the idiosyncratic behavior of an idiosyncratic president,” Adams said of Abbott. “We have no idea what’s next for him and what he’s going to do.”

However, the White House said it continues to do “everything we can to support cities like Gov. Abbott and Gov. DeSantis who are intentionally creating chaos and confusion with their labor policies.” bad.”

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“As we continue to work with our partners in the region to address the new immigration challenge caused by the failure of authoritarian regimes in Venezuela, Nicaragua and Cuba, we are also leading extensive efforts to support cities that welcome new arrivals. fleeing Communists, which Gov. DeSantis and Gov. Abbott are using politically,” White House Deputy Press Secretary Abdullah Hasan said in a statement. “For example, FEMA has staff dedicated to assisting each city, expediting reimbursement requests when received, mobilizing local service providers and nonprofits, and working with other federal agencies to identify additional resources.”

D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser in early September declared a state of public emergency regarding immigration in her city, giving the city $10 million to help with the effort. But as the Washington Post reported at the time, the emergency announcement was also an admission that the Biden administration would not help her.

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The Department of Defense has twice rejected Bowser’s request for National Guard troops to help settle Abbott and the Arizona GOP. Doug Ducey sent to the nation’s capital. According to the Post, the Pentagon rejected the mayor’s request because National Guard troops are not trained in sanitation and food supply, and being deployed to support the city could affect the Guard’s readiness.

The D.C. Council voted this week, at Bowser’s urging, to create a state office to help provide asylum seekers with food, legal services and emergency shelter, among other things.

“What our country needs is Congress to fix the immigration system,” Bowser said in a statement after the vote. “We also encourage the authorities to implement requests from cities and regions that receive buses and planes without connecting or notifying the senders.”


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