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Greg Abbott Defends Busing Migrants From Texas to California

Greg Abbott Defends Busing Migrants From Texas to California


Texas Governor Greg Abbott is defending his decision to send undocumented immigrants from his home state to Los Angeles, California, arguing that Lone Star State border towns were “overwhelmed” by migrants.

Abbott, a Republican, announced in a press release that the “first group” of migrants had arrived by bus at Los Angeles’ Union Station on Wednesday evening. Abbott has previously faced criticism after sending busloads of migrants to other large cities run by Democrats, including Washington, D.C., Chicago, Illinois, and New York City.

Jorge-Mario Cabrera, communications director for immigrant rights group CHIRLA, told the Los Angeles Times that a group of 42 migrants, including children, arrived at the station following a 23-hour bus ride without any food or water.

Abbott maintained that the move was necessary due to President Joe Biden‘s “border crisis,” while adding that migrants already “seek to go to” Los Angeles due to its status as a “sanctuary city.”

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Texas Governor Greg Abbott is pictured during a news conference in Austin, Texas, on June 8, 2023. Abbott announced on Wednesday night that he was sending migrants from Texas to Los Angeles, California, with the “first” bus arriving in the city on the same night.
Brandon Bell

“Texas’ small border towns remain overwhelmed and overrun by the thousands of people illegally crossing into Texas from Mexico because of President Biden’s refusal to secure the border,” Abbott said in a statement. “Los Angeles is a major city that migrants seek to go to, particularly now that its city leaders approved its self-declared sanctuary city status.”

“Our border communities are on the frontlines of President Biden’s border crisis, and Texas will continue providing this much-needed relief until he steps up to do his job and secure the border,” he continued.

Democratic Los Angeles Mayor Karen Bass denounced the move, saying in a statement that her city was “on the receiving end of a despicable stunt that Republican Governors have grown so fond of” and blasting Abbott for playing “cheap political games.”

Bass said that her city was “not caught off guard” by Abbott’s move. She said that local officials and emergency services found out about the impending arrival of the bus with enough time to inform nonprofit partners, who were “already mobilized” when the migrants arrived.

“It is abhorrent that an American elected official is using human beings as pawns in his cheap political games,” said Bass. “Los Angeles is not a city motivated by hate or fear and we absolutely will not be swayed or moved by petty politicians playing with human lives … We will always put people’s health and wellbeing over politics.”

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Newsweek has reached out via email to the office of Abbott for comment.

Texas has sent a total of more than 21,600 migrants to other cities across the country since the busing policy began last year, according to Abbott’s office.

Republican Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a 2024 presidential hopeful, has also reportedly orchestrated the movement of undocumented migrants who arrived in Texas to California, sparking criminal investigations in California and Texas.

California Governor Gavin Newsom, a Democrat who frequently spars with DeSantis, called the Florida Republican a “small, pathetic man” and suggested that he should be charged with kidnapping.

Published: 2023-06-15 04:46:31

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