Florida Governor Ron DeSantis said his state administration has not yet started busing undocumented immigrants from Florida to other parts of the country because the Biden administration has stopped sending them.
During the 2022 legislative session in June, the Republican Governor championed a proposal to take migrants coming from the southern border to Florida, and put them onto buses to northern states on the East Coast, as part of a long-running program through the federal Office of Refugee Resettlement.
The proposal, at $12 million, was tucked into a larger immigration bill and made it among the most contentious of the Florida legislative session, which is known nationwide for contentious bills lately.
The busing proposal was tied to DeSantis’ broader contentious immigration fight with President Joe Biden and Democratic states.
DeSantis likes to use lines about busing immigrants to Delaware, Biden’s home state, frequently in his speeches. But since the law took place about two months ago, there have been no buses.
DeSantis said part of this was because Texas is shipping immigrants to Washington, D.C., and New York City. But the Florida governor said that it is not only that but because there have not been as many people coming into his state as he previously touted.
Experts say that this admission shows how much grandiose the governor spoke with in trying to tell his state that there were so many people coming in.
The Florida Department of Transportation is administration agency in Florida that DeSantis has tasked with running his immigrant-bus program. Three months ago, the agency was asked how it was going to implement and operate the new state policy.
The agency has never responded to a request for information.
DeSantis’ remarks this week mark the first time the department has ever been addressed publicly since the spring close of the legislative session. DeSantis always says that his policy means to change federal immigration policy, but political experts say that this is the policy at the center of his feud with Biden, and the rest of the Democrat party.
In Texas, the republican governor Greg Abbott has taken a similar approach, bussing immigrants into east coast states. Human rights experts say the republican states’ choice to move immigrants into other states without a choice is likely a human rights violation.