Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis released his new budget proposal late last week, which includes a request for millions of dollars to remove illegal immigrants from the state.
“In yesterday’s budget, I put in $8 million for us to be able to transport people here illegally out of the state of Florida,” DeSantis said during a Friday press conference. “It’s somewhat tongue in cheek, but it is true, if you sent them to Delaware or Martha’s Vineyard or some of these places, that border would be secure the next day.”
“One of the priorities that we’ve been working on for many months now and we’ll continue to work with the legislature when they get back is dealing with the fallout from the reckless border policies of the Biden administration,” he added.
The proposed program would be paid for with “interest accrued from federal funds,” according to the Miami Herald. As reported by Pew Research, there were approximately 775,000 illegal aliens residing in Florida as of 2016, but under the Biden administration, illegal immigration across the southern border has skyrocketed to record highs, with those aliens spilling over into surrounding states. Nearly 2 million illegal immigrants were apprehended by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at the U.S. southern border in fiscal year 2021. Such estimates do not account for “got-away” migrants that avoid detection by CBP officials, however.
This proposal is the latest action by Florida’s governor to combat the failing immigration policies of the Biden administration. In September, DeSantis signed an executive order prohibiting all state agencies from facilitating illegal immigrants into Florida and requires the collection of information from state officials on the costs of illegal immigration. The order was also accompanied by a lawsuit filed by Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody against the Biden administration, which challenges the federal government’s “catch and release” policy.
“Since President Biden took office — which has been less than one year — the Border Patrol has released nearly a quarter million illegal aliens into the United States,” DeSantis said. “This executive order makes it clear that Florida resources will not be used to prop up the failed open border agenda enacted by this administration.”
Moody echoed similar sentiments, saying the administration’s “brazen disregard for federal immigration law is jeopardizing the safety and security” of Florida and the nation, “all while costing Florida taxpayers.”
“Biden’s lax border policy is an open invitation to dangerous criminals, human traffickers, and drugs traffickers to enter the United States — creating a crisis at the southern border like we have never seen,” she said. “The federal government cannot simply ignore federal laws because it does not agree with them politically. The Biden administration must implement the immigration policy required under federal law and we are asking the court to take swift action to reduce the harm caused by Biden’s inaction.” Shawn Fleetwood is an intern at The Federalist and a student at the University of Mary Washington, where he plans to major in Political Science and minor in Journalism. He also serves as a state content writer for Convention of States Action. Follow him on Twitter @ShawnFleetwood