Local officials in otherwise “immigrant-friendly” South Florida were in a panic on Thursday when word went out that 1000 illegal immigrants would be dumped there each month to alleviate the impact of the ongoing migrant surge in the Southwest.
Ted Deutch, a Democrat Congressman from Boca Raton, called it a “mean-spirited, ongoing effort to demonize immigrants and divide our country.“
Broward Mayor Mark Bogen said, “The administration is just dropping them off and saying ‘good luck.’ Then they expect our sheriff’s office to be a bus service. We are not a bus service.”
Mack Bernard, the Palm Beach County mayor, cried, “The burden that will affect us will be humongous, specifically our school system. We are not a border state. We are the state of Florida.”
Palm Beach County Sheriff Ric Bradshaw said that his county was already grappling with measles and Hepatitis A, and was not prepared to safely accommodate an influx of immigrants with unknown backgrounds. “[I]t’s a dangerous plan,” he said.
Of the three counties comprising South Florida, only Dade had complied with President Trump’s earlier request that they rescind their “sanctuary cities” policies. Broward and Palm Beach had held firm. Dade did not seem to be included in Thursday’s rumors.
On April 29, President Trump said of the illegal surge, “Now we’re sending many of them to sanctuary cities…. They’re not too happy about it. I said: ‘We’ll give them to you. ’ They said, ‘We don’t want them.’”
The panic among local officials continued for a day, until Friday, when CBP officials in a conference call announced there were no flights of illegals currently scheduled into the area. Those flights that are scheduled would be between cities in the Southwest–in Texas, Arizona, and California.
Immigrant-happy-turned-immigrant-spooked South Florida could breathe a sigh of relief. For now.