Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis effectively accused President Joe Biden of running a “human smuggling operation” with the administration’s secret migrant flights into his state during an appearance Monday evening on Fox News’ “The Ingraham Angle.”
Host Laura Ingraham set the segment up with footage of the Republican governor saying tongue-in-cheek that if illegal immigrants were being sent to Delaware or Martha’s Vineyard that the wide-open southern border “would be secure the next day.”
“The border is obviously a disaster and some people say, ‘Well, that’s a problem for Texas or Arizona.’ Well, actually, the Biden administration puts people on planes and flies them into Florida in the wee hours of the morning,” DeSantis said. “They’ve done over 70 flights in the last six months, dump people here. And we had — a few weeks ago — one of those people that Biden dumped, ended up committing a murder in northeast Florida. So, these are crimes that would not have happened but for Biden’s recklessness.”
“Our view is, if they’re going to be dumping — we want to be able to facilitate transfer to places like Delaware, and we have $8 million in my new budget to be able to do that,” he continued. “But we also look to these carriers that the federal government is contracting with, and we are going to pass legislation that says, if you are facilitating Biden’s policies, which is effectively a mass human smuggling operation, you are not going to be able to do business with the state of Florida or other local governments, and we are going to charge you restitution for each individual that you are bringing.”
DeSantis said in addition to the drugs and crime that come with the influx of illegal immigrants, the state has to deal with “health care costs, education, all of the services that get taxed because of Biden’s reckless policies and so we have a responsibility to fight back, and that’s what we’re doing.”
Ingraham pointed to a Washington Post op-ed attacking DeSantis for “paving his path to the White House on the backs of vulnerable migrant children,” with the biased hit piece referencing his “performative cruelty to immigrant children” to claim he will “kick” them out of Florida shelters.
“If you house a foster child in Florida, you get paid a lot less than what the federal government pays for bringing people from the southern border, from foreign countries,” DeSantis said. “So my view is let’s use our resources to help kids who need help in the state of Florida. American kids. Floridians. Let’s not be a repository for people coming from all over the world illegally through the southern border and then brought to the state of Florida. So focusing on your citizens first I think is common sense.”
In stating that the Biden administration’s policies are wrong, DeSantis said that “if the states band together and do things like Florida is proposing to do, it would be more likely that they’re going to have to reverse course. But if you’re facilitating, then they’re going to continue to do what they’re doing.”
Saying the state has a “responsibility to stand up for the rule of law,” DeSantis said last week his office will propose a “series of legislative reforms” that will include barring any contractors who helped the Biden administration transport migrants into and across Florida from future contracts with the state.
Asked to comment on California and New York going back to mask mandates amid the omicron variant of COVID-19, DeSantis said it was all about control and power.
“What are we on, like day 700 of the 15 days to slow the spread?” he asked. “The fact of the matter is, I think we’ve learned, you give these people an inch, they will never let go. They are going to take a mile, they are going to restrict, they are going to mandate, they are going to lock you down and we cannot accept that.”
“Obviously in Florida we do not accept it, so there’s no reason to be restricting or mandating anybody throughout our country and the fact that this is still going on in these blue states and may even intensify over the coming weeks and months,” DeSantis continued. “It just shows you if you value your freedom, in 2022, if you are in those states, you can make your voice heard and you’ve got to do a change of direction because I fear that they’re going to continue to do this until they suffer at the ballot box.”
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