New York city mayor Eric Adams has asked for assistance from the federal government as buses carrying migrants sent by Texas governor Greg Abbott arrived in the city.
In a tweet on Sunday, Mr Adams said the Texas governor “used innocent people as political pawns to manufacture a crisis”.
“New Yorkers are stepping up to fix it — that’s our city’s values,” he said. “But we need the federal government’s help — money, technical assistance and more.”
In April, Mr Abbott started the Lone Star Operation by sending buses with undocumented migrants arriving in Texas on the southern border to Washington DC.
The governor has said that his efforts, which were widely slammed by critics as a “political stunt”, would help relieve border communities who find themselves “overwhelmed by record-high numbers of illegal crossings while bringing the border crisis to President Biden’s doorstep”.
“Now, Washington DC is having to realise, in a very minimal way, exactly what Texas is having to deal with as a result of the open border policies that the Biden Administration has allowed,” Mr Abbott had said in a press statement released shortly after Easter, commending the program for its success in providing “relief” for Texans.
On Friday, Mr Abbott announced that he has started sending buses to New York after previously denying Mr Adams’ claims that migrants being sent from Texas were overwhelming the city’s homeless shelters.
On Sunday, Mr Adams visited a bus station in New York to greet an arriving bus.
“This is horrific, when you think about what the governor is doing,” he said at the terminal, according to Politico. “Some of the families are on the bus that wanted to go to other locations, and they were not allowed to do so. They were forced on the bus.”
“Our goal is to immediately find out each family’s needs and give them the assistance they want.”
According to recent estimates, more than 200 buses have arrived in Washington DC since the operation began, with more than 4,000 migrants – costing the Lone Star State’s taxpayers about $1,400 per passenger, an investigation by NBC 5 in Dallas has found.
Earlier in July, Washington DC Mayor Muriel Bowser also requested the Biden administration to enlist the National Guard’s help to receive bussed migrants.
Defense secretary Lloyd Austin turned down Ms Bowser’s request and said that the move would “negatively impact the readiness” of the force.
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