- Florida’s governor, Ron DeSantis, sent a plane full of migrants to the Massachusetts island of Martha’s Vineyard.
- It looks like the goal was to put some of the burden of immigration on an affluent, liberal area.
- The local community stepped up and provided support for the migrants.
Ron DeSantis, the governor of Florida, kept his promise to send undocumented immigrants to other states by sending two planes full of people to the island of Martha’s Vineyard on Wednesday.
The news shocked a Massachusetts resort area where rich and powerful people like former President Barack Obama have made home.
The migrants from Florida got off the planes at Martha’s Vineyard Airport and were seen waiting on the tarmac.
The Cape Cod Times said the migrants were put on a plane with nothing but a brochure from the island’s community services center, about two miles from the airport.
Officials said that the people then walked from the airport to the center.
On the island, the influx caused some chaos, which is what the governor of Florida wanted.
Since none of the migrants spoke English, Spanish translators from the local high school were called to help social service workers talk with them. In addition, water and snacks were provided to the migrants.
There was some confusion about where the migrants came from, with local media and officials saying at least one of the planes came from Texas.
But the Florida governor’s office quickly confirmed that Florida was the one who sent them there.
President Joe Biden’s policy on immigration has come under fire from DeSantis, and Florida has taken legal action against it. This was another part of Desantis’s plan to protect the policy.
“States like Massachusetts, New York, and California will better facilitate the care of these individuals who they have invited into our country by incentivizing illegal immigration through their designation as ‘sanctuary states’ and support for the Biden administration’s open border policies,” said Taryn Fenske, the governor’s communication director.
The Republican governor had been saying for months that he would be willing to bus undocumented immigrants to Delaware, where Biden is from.
He had also said early on that he might send some to Martha’s Vineyard.
In April, the Florida state legislature gave the Florida Department of Transportation $12 million from the state budget so that it could carry out the immigrant relocation program.
Fox News reported that Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker’s office said the arrivals at Martha’s Vineyard were provided short-term shelter.
“The Baker-Polito Administration is in touch with local officials regarding the arrival of migrants in Martha’s Vineyard,” Terry MacCormack, Baker’s press secretary, wrote in a statement to the outlet.
“At this time, short-term shelter services are being provided by local officials, and the Administration will continue to support those efforts.”
Dylan Fernandes, a state representative, said on Twitter that the community came together to help the migrants and put them up in a local church.
“Our island jumped into action putting together 50 beds, giving everyone a good meal, providing a play area for the children, and making sure people have the healthcare and support they need. We are a community that comes together to support immigrants,” he wrote on Twitter.
Julian Cyr serves in the Massachusetts Senate representing Cape Cod, Martha’s Vineyard, and Nantucket.
Cyr called the move a cruel political stunt when he talked to the Martha’s Vineyard Times.
“This is deeply disgusting. This is a cruel ruse that manipulates families that are seeking a better life,” he said, describing them as “fundamentally racist tactics.”
In the past few weeks, Texas and Arizona, which Republicans run, have sent thousands of migrants to places like New York, Chicago, and Washington, DC, which Democrats run.
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