New York City Mayor Eric Adams denied that the migrant crisis he faces was an inevitable outcome of being a sanctuary city.
Republican governors like Gov. Greg Abbott, R-Texas, have sent buses of asylum seekers to Democratic-controlled states and sanctuary cities. Republicans have argued the action is necessary to show the rest of the country what border states are dealing with due to the surge of migrants.
In a recent GOP primary debate, Republican presidential candidate Nikki Haley argued that the migrant crisis overwhelming Democratic cities was the inevitable outcome of impractical policy.
“This is putting harm on our schools, on our hospitals. Taxpayers are paying for it. You see these mayors are now upset about it. The only reason Eric Adams is now upset, why? He shouldn’t be a sanctuary city then,” she said. “That’s why we have to defund sanctuary cities. Now Governor Abbott finally did to them what’s been happening to Texas for so long. We’ve got to put an end to this.”
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Many would-be-illegal immigrants tactically use asylum law to enter the United States legally as so-called “asylum seekers,” but Adams appeared to call out Haley for conflating the two.
“Well, national leaders should have national knowledge of policies. This has nothing to do with sanctuary cities,” he argued in an appearance on “Good Morning America” on ABC. “Migrants and asylum seekers are paroled into the country, they are here legally. And so when you have a national leader talking about ‘sanctuary cities are the reason we’re having this,’ it is telling me she’s not knowledgeable on the real topic.”
Adams went on to say, “The problem is, when you parole someone into a country, you should have a decompression strategy on a national level to spread it throughout the country and not target just certain cities.”
Later, Adams argued that even major cities cannot handle the amounts of migrants going there.
“The overall fix”, he said, is that “cities shouldn’t be handling a national crisis of this magnitude.”
“We’re getting an average – just think of this number, there are weeks we get 4,000 migrants that come into our city,” Adams said. “When you have anywhere (from) 2,500 to 4,000 coming in a week, and you have to find housing, food, shelter, clothing, educate the children, health care, that’s not sustainable. It’s a $12 billion hole in the budget of our economy. It’s going to impact low-income New Yorkers,, and it’s gonna impact every service in the city. I said it last year – we’re going to start seeing the visualization of this crisis. We’ve done a great job, but we can’t continue to sustain this.”
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Adams has ripped the idea of being sent migrants being sent to New York city because of its sanctuary status before.
“These people are paroled into the country, that has nothing to do with it. While they are here, we are obligated (to provide housing) and that’s why we’re in court saying that the right to shelter should not have an impact on this migrant crisis,” he argued at a recent press conference.
The mayor has argued that “right to shelter” rules for New York City are now being misused, and were not originally intended to force the city to provide housing for the unprecedented waves of asylum seekers coming in.
Some of his past comments about mass migration played a very different tune, however.
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In 2019 Adams declared: “To anyone in the world fleeing hatred and oppression, the ultimate city of immigrants wants you to remember: you’re ALWAYS welcome here.”