Immigration debate takes spotlight in Florida Governor’s race
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - Immigration is suddenly at the center of the Florida governor’s race after Ron Desantis sends dozens of immigrants to Massachusetts.
50 undocumented immigrants were escorted off Martha’s Vineyard today to a nearby military base.
Governor Desantis had them flown to the island Wednesday as he blasts president Biden’s border policies.
The move set off a heated debate.
WCTV caught up with the governor’s challenger, Charlie Crist, in Tallahassee.
Crist had two stops in the capital city, a rally for reproductive rights at the capitol and then a veterans roundtable. At both, much of the focus was on the governor’s migrant move.
Governor Desantis was greeted with applause Friday in Daytona beach to tout funding for aerospace job training and defending his migrant move.
“All we’re trying to do was offer transport to sanctuary jurisdictions, free to the alien, but certainly not mandatory,” Gov. DeSantis said.
The governor funded the transport of about fifty migrants from Texas to Florida and then Martha’s Vineyard without warning.
“The legislature gave me $12 million dollars. We’re going to spend every penny of that to make sure we’re protecting the people of the state of Florida,” Gov. DeSantis said.
But the move is not sitting well with democrats across the country including challenger Charlie Crist who is stumping on the steps of the Florida capitol.
“It was all a stunt, and it was cruel,” Crist said.
Crist is accusing DeSantis of using families as pawns to score political points.
“It shocks the conscience of any decent human being, to see that a Governor as good as the state of Florida is, would do something like this to children. It’s shocking,” he said.
The governor and Crist with wildly conflicting views on the matter seem to agree on one thing, both happy to make this issue a top story.
“I’m glad this is now put this issue on the front burner,” Gov. DeSantis said.
“This may have been an illegal act, and we have the right to know,” Crist said.
Crist’s campaign says he filed a sunshine law request this morning asking the governor’s office to share behind the scene communications about immigrant flights and who set them up.
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