Republican Miami Mayor Francis Suarez on Sunday offered praise of a prominent Democrat mayor, saying he was happy that the Democrat was “standing up and talking about” how the migrant crisis was impacting his city.
“I’m actually quite proud of Mayor [Eric] Adams from New York for standing up and talking about how this is impacting the city of New York,” Suarez said during an interview on CBS’ “Face the Nation.”
“He has to focus on crime reduction, and instead you see images of police officers helping people in the classic Roosevelt Hotel find housing,” he continued. “These officers should be, and you want them to be, focused on reducing crime, and instead, have to deal with this migrant crisis that as you’ve said should be a federal issue.”
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Adams appeared on the same Sunday morning show and said that migrants from the U.S.-Mexico border should be sent to every city “throughout the entire country.”
“We have 108,000 cities, villages, towns. If everyone takes a small portion of that, and if it’s coordinated at the border, to ensure that those who are coming here to this country in a lawful manner is actually moved throughout the entire country, it is not a burden on one city,” Adams said. “And the numbers need to be clear. We received over 70,000 migrant asylum seekers in our city, 42,000 are still in our care. If this is properly handled at the border level, this issue can be resolved while we finally get Congress, particularly the Republican Party, to deal with a comprehensive immigration policy.”
Suarez also weighed in on the migrant crisis by expressing frustration about the federal government not helping Miami.
“We haven’t received any support as of yet from the federal government that we are aware of,” Suarez said. “We checked to see if we have gotten any help from FEMA – it turns out we have not.”
Suarez said his city has struggled to manage the flux of immigrants over the past year, especially from Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela and Haiti, which the Biden administration created a program for to ease the asylum process in January.
“It is a migrant crisis in our city as well,” Suarez said. “Just in the last two months, the Coast Guard has processed 408 migrants on our coast. Just last year in our public school system, we had over 14,000 new children – 10,000 of which came from four countries: Cuba, Nicaragua, Venezuela and Haiti. And that’s the equivalent of five new 2,000-student school. It’s a tremendous burden on our system.”
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Illegal crossings at the border spiked this month amid the expiration of Title 42, a COVID-19 emergency policy that allowed border agents to turn away migrants.
Suarez said this migrant crisis puts a burden primarily on large cities, many of which have received little to no federal aid.
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Gov. Ron DeSantis, R-Fla., took action in May to help counter mass migration in his state when he signed a bill that requires businesses with more than 25 employees to check the immigration status of those whom they hire. A failure to comply leads to a $1,000 fine. The law has prompted immigration groups to discourage migrants from traveling to Florida.
FEMA and New York City Mayor Adams did not respond to a request for comment.