Florida’s DeSantis sends dozens of ‘illegal immigrants’ to Martha’s Vineyard, escalates tactics against ‘sanctuary destination’

Tallahassee, Florida —Florida Governor Ron DeSantis flew two immigrant planes to Martha’s Vineyard on Wednesday, Republican governor’s escalation strategy Calling attention to what they see as the failed border policy of the Biden administration. The flights to the upscale island enclave in Massachusetts are part of an effort to “carry illegal immigrants to sanctuary destinations,” said Taryn Fenske, DeSantis’ communications director.

While DeSantis’ office did not detail their legal status, many immigrants who crossed the border illegally from Mexico were temporarily spared deportation after being released by U.S. authorities to seek asylum in immigration court — a measure of U.S. law and international as permitted by the treaty – or on humanitarian parole.

Massachusetts Gov. Terry McCormack, press secretary to Republican Charlie Baker, said in a statement that the state’s executive branch was “in touch with local officials regarding the arrival of immigrants on Martha’s Vineyard.”

“Currently, local officials are providing short-term shelter services, and the government will continue to support these efforts,” McCormack said.

Immigration DeSantis Airfare
A woman from a newly arrived group of migrants holds a child as they are being fed outside St Petersburg. Andrews Episcopal Church, September 14, 2022, Edgartown, Massachusetts, Martha’s Vineyard.

Ray Ewing/Associated Press

State House of Representatives Dylan FernandezA person representing Martha’s Vineyard tweeted: “Our island is in action with 50 beds, a great meal for everyone, a play area for the kids, making sure people get what they need. Healthcare and support. We are an up and coming community supporting immigrants together.”

“As far as we know, approximately 50 people from Venezuela landed at Martha’s Vineyard airport and sought shelter,” Martha’s Vineyard Islandwide Regional Emergency Management said in a statement Wednesday afternoon.

Immigration DeSantis Airfare
Migrants gather outside St. Petersburg with their belongings. Andrews Episcopal Church, September 14, 2022, Edgartown, Massachusetts, Martha’s Vineyard.

Ray Ewing/Associated Press

“Town Emergency Management Operations and Sheriff’s Offices and County Management from the six island towns are actively collaborating to develop a coordinated regional response,” the statement said, adding that “two emergencies have been established at local island churches. Shelter, plus space available in case of further arrivals.”

The emergency management team has “contacted our state and federal partners for additional and long-term support and assistance”.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott began transporting thousands of migrants to Washington, D.C., in April, and recently listed New York and Chicago as destinations. Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey has been transporting migrants to Washington since May. Passengers must sign a disclaimer stating that free travel is voluntary.

Gov. Greg Abbott pledges to keep sending migrants to sanctuary cities


DeSantis, who has been mentioned as a potential presidential candidate, appears to be taking his strategy to the next level by using planes and choosing Martha’s Vineyard, a port town of about 15,000 people nowhere near as massive as New York or Washington. influx or immigration.

CBS Boston reports The group of migrants lingered about three and a half miles from the airport to Edgartown, where it was Barbara Rush in St. Petersburg. “50 people from Martha’s Vineyard Community Services almost walked to their front door,” Andrews Church said.

CBS News immigration reporter Camilo Montoya-Galvez noted that unlike other cities Republican governors have chosen as an immigration destination, Martha’s Vineyard is not an urban metropolitan area with a strong social services infrastructure: no large refugee or immigrant serving organizations isle. There is no Justice Department immigration court for immigrants to attend asylum hearings. There are no ICE field offices where immigrants can register. If it wasn’t the preferred destination for recent arrivals, the flights would also raise questions about whether all the migrants transported there on Wednesday knew where they were going.

Regardless, the move is likely to please DeSantis’ supporters, who mock Democrat-led immigrant-friendly “sanctuary” cities and anger critics who say he weaponizes immigrants as pawns for political gain .

“History will not be kind to leaders who see human beings as cargo, load them up and send them a thousand miles away without telling them their destination,” the Rep. cautioned. Bill Keating, D-Massachusetts .

The Florida legislature allocated $12 million to transport “illegal immigrants” from the state, in line with federal law, Fenske said.

“States like Massachusetts, New York, and California will encourage illegal immigration by designating ‘sanctuary states’ and support the Biden administration’s open border policy to better facilitate their invitation to enter our country,” Fenske said. The care of these individuals.” .

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