TX Buses First Unlawful Migrants to Denver

Unlawful migrants, without a place to stay upon arrival in the city, seek safe shelter inside the District 12 station of the Chicago Police Department in Chicago, Illinois, on May 17, 2023. | Image by Eric Cox, REUTERS

The city of Denver received its first-ever busload of unlawful migrants from the southern border as the Texas governor continues with his busing initiative launched last April to relieve communities at the border.

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott posted on Twitter on May 18 that the busload of unlawful migrants was dropped off that afternoon in downtown Denver at 14th Street and Court Place near Civic Center Park.

“Until President Biden reverses course on his reckless open border policies, Texas will continue to provide relief to our overwhelmed border communities,” Abbott commented.

He also reported that more than 19,000 unlawful migrants had been transported to self-declared sanctuary cities like Chicago, Washington D.C., and Philadelphia since the initiative’s start.

On May 14, Abbott sent a busload of unlawful migrants to Vice President Kamala Harris’ residence in Washington, D.C., dropping them off at the U.S. Naval Observatory.

Earlier this month, as The Dallas Express reported, then-Mayor Lori Lightfoot addressed a letter to Abbott requesting that he refrain from sending more people to Chicago. She noted that the Windy City had already taken in over 8,000 and no longer had the resources to accommodate any more.

Her successor Brandon Johnson signed an executive order upon arriving in office that created a new deputy mayor position to oversee “Immigrant, Migrant, and Refugee Rights.” This involves coordinating with stakeholders “to support newly arrived community members, immigrants, refugees, migrants, undocumented community members, DACA recipients, and people applying for citizenship.”

As The Dallas Express reported, the recent expiration of Title 42 policy at the southern border is expected to bring swells of unlawful migrants in the coming months.

Abbott has been directing immense amounts of the state’s resources to secure the border, as The Dallas Express reported. Deploying manpower to aid in Operation Lone Star and other activities has meant redirecting forces from other cities. This was recently seen with the state troopers previously assigned to Austin being moved to the border, as covered in The Dallas Express.

Recent data show that since the expiration of Title 42, there have been approximately 11,000 unlawful migrants expelled at the border.

Meanwhile, approximately 21,000 were granted entry by U.S. Border Patrol while their asylum claims are being processed by the immigration courts, according to The Washington Post.

While meant to reduce the number of people in detention centers or processing tents, this practice has historically been criticized for driving unlawful migration.

After a massive influx of unlawful migrants just before the expiration of Title 42, an unexpected lull in attempted unlawful border crossings has been logged since it expired, the WP reported.

It is difficult to ascertain why just yet, but Theresa Cardinal Brown, a senior immigration policy adviser at a think tank called the Bipartisan Policy Center, told the WP that unlawful migrants and traffickers might just be holding back because they are “trying to figure out the new rules.”

“They’re paying attention to who’s getting in, who’s getting deported, what did they encounter,” Brown explained to the WP. “If the reality on the ground is not matching the rhetoric very quickly everybody’s going to figure that out.”

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