In response to President Joe Biden’s lax enforcement of border security and immigration laws, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) ordered this week for buses to be chartered to transport illegal migrants released in his state to Washington D.C. instead.
The White House is not taking that action by Abbott seriously, however, as evidenced when press secretary Jen Psaki dismissed it on Thursday as a mere “publicity stunt,” Fox News reported.
Transporting illegal migrants from Texas to D.C.
The impetus for Gov. Abbott’s move, which is part of a broader effort to step up border security and immigration enforcement at the state level, was the recent announcement that the Biden administration would soon end Title 42, a public health order that allowed for the immediate expulsion at the border of unlawful migrant entrants.
In a Wednesday press release, Abbott revealed that he had directed the Texas Department of Emergency Management “to charter buses and flights to transport migrants who have been processed and released from federal custody to Washington, D.C.”
“To board a bus or flight, a migrant must volunteer to be transported and show documentation from DHS. Mayors and county judges can notify TDEM of any DHS-facilitated drop-off of migrants in their communities so that the agency can provide appropriate transportation,” the release added.
Gov. Abbott further expounded on the idea during an interview Thursday morning on Fox News and said, “Joe Biden has refused to come to the border to see the chaos that he has created by his open-border policies, so we’re gonna take the border to him by transporting the people that he is dropping off in local communities in the state of Texas and sending them to Washington by plane or by bus.”
He noted that federally-contracted buses routinely transported newly-arrived migrants to Texas cities like San Antonio and Houston, and added, “So I think they just need longer bus rides.”
Dismissed as a “publicity stunt”
During Thursday’s press briefing, Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked press secretary Psaki about Abbott’s plan and what the White House would do once those illegal border crossers had arrived in D.C.
“Well, I’m not aware of what authority the governor would be doing that under. I think it’s pretty clear this is a publicity stunt,” Psaki said.
“His own office admits that a migrant would need to voluntarily be transported and that he can’t compel them to. Because again, enforcement of our country’s immigration laws lies with the federal government, not a state,” she added, clearly overlooking the fact that Abbott has only suggested doing this as a result of the federal government’s non-enforcement of immigration laws.
Peter Doocy asks Psaki if the White House will find places to stay and something to do for the migrants Texas Gov. Abbott plans on bussing to DC. pic.twitter.com/WGSLHwG6XK
— The Post Millennial (@TPostMillennial) April 7, 2022
It remains to be seen if Gov. Abbott follows through on this idea to contract transportation for illegal migrants from Texas to D.C. or what the White House would do if a busload pulled up to the portico and unloaded, but we will certainly all be watching for that to occur.