The smugly liberal New York Times has long convinced itself Republicans only want to make illegal immigrants suffer, which explains how the paper’s “The Morning” newsletter Monday got the recent “busing migrants to Martha's Vineyard” story the wrong way around: The moves by the governors of Texas and Florida to bus migrants to liberal enclaves were not about punishing migrants so much as exposing the hypocrisy of American "sanctuary city" liberals (and it worked).
Newsletter writer German Lopez talked to Times immigration reporter Miriam Jordan (a selection of Lopez’s questions appear in italics below), and they commiserated over the Republican “stunts,” while reveling in the migrants’ success in America as some kind of backfire against the governors. Lopez set the table:
Good morning. Republican governors’ immigration stunts are actually helping some migrants.
Gov. Ron DeSantis of Florida created a firestorm this month for what he did to about 50 migrants, mostly from Venezuela, who had recently crossed the southern border: He put them on two planes that took them to Martha’s Vineyard, the famously liberal and upscale vacation destination in Massachusetts. He was following the lead, albeit more explosively, of his fellow G.O.P. governor Greg Abbott of Texas, in sending migrants to progressive strongholds.
As is often the case with liberals, Jordan gave away the Biden Administration’s game of encouraging immigration: “The United States, they heard, was allowing Venezuelans who made it to the border to stay in the country, and jobs were plentiful.”
Jordan explained what happens to migrants at the border:
After they have been processed, the Border Patrol releases them -- for example, at a church in a border town, such as Eagle Pass, Texas. There, they are offered two options: They can buy a bus ticket to get to San Antonio and beyond. If they don’t have any money, they are encouraged to board a free bus to Washington, D.C., New York or Chicago.
The free service is provided by Abbott, who’s trying to show that he’s keeping the border under control and spreading the responsibility for this influx of migrants to Democratic cities and states.
Jordan seemed to think she had a “gotcha” against the GOP in her response to Lopez, by claiming the migrants are “ironically” doing well (click “expand”):
Lopez: How do the migrants do if they take that free ride?
Jordan: Ironically, it’s benefiting many of the migrants.
For example: I met a Venezuelan migrant named Lever Alejos. He had used up all the money he saved to make the trek to the U.S. from Venezuela. He took one of the buses to Washington, D.C., where he found a bed in a shelter. In a matter of weeks, he has managed to not only find work; he has started sending money back to Venezuela to support his 7-year-old son. He said his son’s life is 100 percent better. He has also saved to buy a cellphone and plans to buy a used 2012 Honda Civic.
Instead of thinking this was an own goal, Lopez suggested this was proof it all has “backfir[ed]” on Abbott:
Is this backfiring for Abbott, if the migrants are doing well and they’re filling an economic need for Democratic areas?
Jordan: Ultimately, it’s about optics. It’s in part about securing support from his right-wing base. They back cracking down on unauthorized immigration; punishing people who, in their view, didn’t come to the U.S. the right way; and placing the burden of helping the migrants on Democratic cities and states….the stunts are costing Democratic cities and states money in the short term; they have to offer shelter and other services to the migrants.
“Costing Democratic cities and states money…” So just like border states for decades?