The first group of illegal immigrants has been sent from Texas to Denver, Colorado, said the Lone Star State’s governor, Greg Abbott.
Since April 2022, Texas has been busing illegal immigrants to Democrat-led jurisdictions to ease the pressure of illegal immigration.
Abbott, a Republican, has repeatedly blamed the border crisis on the Biden administration.
“Texas’ overwhelmed and overrun border communities should not have to shoulder the flood of illegal immigration due to President Biden’s reckless open border policies, like his mass catch and release without court dates or any way to track them,” he said in a statement on Thursday.
According to his office, the first bus of illegal immigrants to Colorado were dropped off near Civic Center Park at 14th Street and Court Place on Thursday afternoon.
“Until the President and his Administration step up and fulfill their constitutional duty to secure the border, the State of Texas will continue busing migrants to self-declared sanctuary cities like Denver to provide much-needed relief to our small border towns,” Abbott added.
“Since beginning the migrant busing strategy last spring, more than 19,000 migrants have been transported to these self-declared sanctuary cities while providing much-needed relief to Texas’ overwhelmed border communities,” according to Abbott’s office.
Back in April 2022, Abbott ordered illegal immigrants to be bused from Texas to Washington, D.C. By the end of 2022, more drop-off locations were added: New York City, Chicago, and Philadelphia.
Vice President Kamala Harris had illegal immigrants dropped up near her home in September 2022, then on Christmas Eve, and, more recently, on May 14.
Abbott penned an open letter on May 16 (pdf) to every U.S. governor, calling for law enforcement support at the southern border. He asked the states to make use of the Emergency Management Assistance Compact, which allows states to collaborate and share resources during emergencies or disasters.
“Emboldened Mexican drug cartels and other transnational criminal enterprises profit off this chaos, smuggling people and dangerous drugs like fentanyl into communities nationwide.”
“In the federal government’s absence, we, as Governors, must band together to combat President Biden’s ongoing border crisis and ensure the safety and security that all Americans deserve. …
“Join us in the mission to defend our national sovereignty and territorial integrity and send all available law enforcement personnel and resources to the Texas-Mexico border to serve alongside our thousands of Texas National Guard soldiers and Texas Department of Public Safety troopers.”
In the letter, he also thanked Florida and Idaho for lending their support, writing, “I thank these states for proactively addressing this crisis and request other states follow their lead in helping to secure America’s border.”
Mississippi, on May 17, announced it would also send aid by deploying its National Guard troops to the border.
“Every state has become a border state, and every day we’re seeing the terrible impact of this humanitarian and national security crisis,” Gov. Tate Reeves, a Republican, wrote on Twitter.
“What happens at the border doesn’t stay there. Drugs and people are trafficked to every state in the nation—including Mississippi.”
In recent months, other Republican governors in southern U.S. states have been sending migrants to northern, Democrat-led cities in protest of the end of Title 42, which took place on May 11.
End of Title 42
Title 42, part of the Public Health Service Act of 1944, was implemented under the Trump administration in March 2020. It allows for blocking asylum claims and swift expulsion of most unauthorized border crossers under the grounds of keeping contagious diseases out of the United States.
Under Title 42, border agents were able to rapidly send back many illegal immigrants to Mexico, which at the time helped stem the spread of COVID-19 in crowded detention settings.
The Biden administration made some policy changes ahead of the anticipated surge of asylum seekers and illegal border crossers.
Just before the end of Title 42, the administration implemented a rule (pdf) that essentially revived a Trump-era travel policy disqualifying people from applying for asylum in the United States if they didn’t first seek protection in countries they passed through on their way to the United States.
The Biden administration has also developed a parole program that allows immigrants to enter and work in the United States for up to two years.
The Biden era rules state that those who still ignore the border and illegally cross will be returned and disqualified from future entry under the parole program.
Many migrants, worried about tougher enforcement measures, began arriving at the border before Title 42 expired.
Ryan Morgan contributed to this report.
From The Epoch Times