Sign up for The Brief, our daily newsletter that keeps readers up to speed on the most essential Texas news.
A second bus of migrants sent from Texas arrived outside the residence of Vice President Kamala Harris on Saturday, continuing Gov. Greg Abbott’s policy of sending migrants from his state to target the Biden administration over its immigration policies.
The bus arrived before daylight outside the Naval Observatory in Washington, D.C.; a video shared by an NBC News journalist showed migrants wearing masks and carrying pillows walking off the bus and into a city that has declared a public health emergency due to the influx of migrants. A spokesperson for Abbott confirmed that the bus came from Texas.
On Friday, Abbott’s office said it had sent 8,000 migrants to the nation’s capital since announcing his busing policy in the spring. The state has also sent 2,500 migrants to New York City and 600 to Chicago. Abbott began targeting the vice president’s residence this week after she appeared on the NBC news show “Meet the Press” and said the border was secure, stoking conservative anger.
“The Biden-Harris Administration continues ignoring and denying the historic crisis at our southern border, which has endangered and overwhelmed Texas communities for almost two years,” Abbott said this week. “Our supposed Border Czar, Vice President Kamala Harris, has yet to even visit the border to see firsthand the impact of the open border policies she has helped implement, even going so far as to claim the border is ‘secure.’”
Abbott has also said the busing is providing much-needed relief to communities along the border. But leaders in the destination cities have expressed outrage because Texas is not coordinating them or giving them notice about when the buses are going to arrive. New York City has a policy to grant shelter to anyone who needs it within its borders, but Mayor Eric Adams has floated the idea of lifting that policy due to the struggle it has faced keeping up with the people arriving on buses.
The city of El Paso has also begun busing migrants to New York. Fox News reported that six more buses arrived from there on Saturday.
Meanwhile, other governors are following Abbott’s lead. This week, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis arranged for a group of migrants in San Antonio to be flown to Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts, where local officials were left scrambling to help them after they arrived with little or no support.
The Texas Tribune Festival is almost here! From Thursday through Saturday, Sept. 22-24, in downtown Austin, TribFest attendees will enjoy three days full of mind-expanding events, conversations and panels featuring more than 350 big names including Chris Bosh, Pete Buttigieg, Liz Cheney, Annette Gordon-Reed and many others. Join us for Texas’ biggest politics and policy event when you buy your tickets today.