Exclusive: Illegal migrants deny being ‘tricked’ into getting on buses to DC, NYC

Jennie Taer, DCNF

Illegal migrants bused from the southern border to Washington, D.C, denied that they’re being “tricked” into boarding the buses, several of them told the Daily Caller News Foundation, contradicting claims made by the mayors of D.C. and New York City.

Washington, D.C., Mayor Muriel Bowser earlier criticized Republican Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey and Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, who’s also sending buses to Washington, saying the migrants are being “tricked” into getting on the buses. New York City Mayor Eric Adams echoed Bowser’s claim that the migrants were “tricked,” saying that they were “forced” to board the buses.

The migrants, however, told a different story.

The DCNF spoke with the illegal migrants, who arrived in Washington on Friday on Republican Arizona Gov. Ducey’s buses, as they were waiting for a bus leaving Union Station for New York early Tuesday morning.

“They helped me and collaborated so that I could get from all the way to Washington. They took me to a shelter in which they treated me very well and they offered me the ticket from here to New York,” a migrant man from Venezuela told the DCNF. His wife, who was traveling with him and their three children, also said the travel option was voluntary.

“No. They offer it to us. They offer it to us for free to help those of us who don’t have [money] for free,” she said. “There are people who cross and they do have the money and they pay for the flight. But then the bus is voluntary. If you want, what they do is they forward us all the way to Washington, and, from here, we look for the organizations that help us so that we can get to our destination. Because at least for us that foundation gave us the tickets.”

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A migrant from the Dominican Republic, who was traveling with her 12-year-old son, told the DCNF that she knew the bus was going to Washington and that they volunteered to come.

“[We’re going] to New York, where they will give us housing,” she said.

Ducey’s effort intends to send a message to the federal government about the influx of migrants crossing the border, Ducey spokesman C.J. Karamargin told the DCNF at the beginning of the busing.

“This is a problem caused by Washington. So we are bringing it to Washington,” Karamargin said.

“This is the flow of asylum seekers, migrants entering into the United States or coming into our or entering through Arizona because it’s easy and bearing the burden for this is our communities. Like folks in Yuma, where hospitals, community organizations, nongovernmental organizations are being strained tremendously. So, the goal here is to alleviate the burden for Arizonans,” he added.

The number of migrants that have crossed the southern border since October has surpassed 1,800,000, a new record, according to internal U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data exclusively obtained by the DCNF.

Bowser’s office didn’t respond to the DCNF’s request for comment. Adams’ office didn’t immediately respond.

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