The Democratic governor of Illinois this week blamed President Biden for creating an “untenable situation” in his state by failing to address the national migrant crisis.
Gov. J.B. Pritzker joined a growing number of Democrats who have criticized Biden’s border policies when he sent a letter to the president on Monday with a list of demands outlining how the federal government’s response to the border crisis is inadequate. Pritzker complained that more than 15,000 migrants have been shipped “like cargo” to Illinois from border states “in a dehumanizing attempt to score political points.”
While Illinois Democrats welcome migrants — Chicago is a sanctuary city — Pritzker wrote that the number of migrant arrivals is “overwhelming our ability to provide aid to the refugee population.”
“Unfortunately, the welcome and aid Illinois has been providing to these asylum seekers has not been matched with support by the federal government. Most critically, the government’s lack of intervention and coordination at the border has created an untenable situation for Illinois,” the letter states.
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The letter comes after Pritzker and Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson had a call with White House chief of staff Jeff Zients, senior adviser Tom Perez and officials from the Department of Homeland Security. Pritzker and Johnson warned the White House that Chicago is expected to see 25 buses a day from Texas starting this week, potentially dropping off 1,250 migrants a day, the Chicago Sun Times reported.
“On top of the 15,000 that have arrived in Chicago and Illinois over the last 13 months, we are now seeing busloads more migrants at increasingly higher rates being sent specifically to Chicago each day,” Pritzker wrote. He said that Illinois’s state government has spent over $330 million to address the crisis, “a massive amount of money for a state,” and demanded Biden’s “immediate help” to find housing for migrants that are currently sleeping in police stations and on sidewalks.
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“There is much more that can and must be done on a federal level to address a national humanitarian crisis that is currently being shouldered by state and local governments without support,” Pritzker wrote.
Pritzker’s letter comes after New York Democrats including Gov. Kathy Hochul and New York City Mayor Eric Adams have called on the Biden administration to increase federal assistance on the migrant crisis amid a historic wave of illegal immigration.
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Customs and Border Protection (CBP) sources tell Fox News that total migrant encounters for September have exceeded 260,000, which is the highest monthly total ever recorded. That number includes both Border Patrol encounters between ports of entry and Office of Field Operations (OFO) encounters at ports.
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Border state governors and mayors, overwhelmed by the sheer number of people, have controversially bused thousands of migrants up north to sanctuary jurisdictions like Chicago and Illinois so that these cities would share the burden of illegal migration.
Fox News’ Adam Shaw, Griff Jenkins and Bill Melugin contributed reporting.