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Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s office is calling out Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker after busses of migrants were sent into suburban towns from the Windy City.
Over 100 migrants who arrived in Chicago after being bussed from Texas on Sept. 7 were then transported out of the city and into neighboring suburbs — but the mayors of several towns received little to no notice that the migrants would be arriving.
Elk Grove Village Mayor Craig Johnson told Fox News Digital in an interview that he received a call from Pritzker’s office on Sept. 9 informing him that a “migrant bus” was being sent to his town that very same evening, but was provided with no further details.
When Johnson pressed for information, such as the number of migrants coming, what hotel they are being sent to, if they have gone through health screenings, or if they had gone through background checks, he got no answer.
Mayor Lori Lightfoot and Gov. Greg Abbott have been in a public battle over migrants arriving in their states and cities. (Getty Images)
It wasn’t until a later call that federal officials told Johnson that the migrants went through health screenings and background checks.
After a delay from the governor’s office, according to Johnson, 90 migrants showed up on Sept. 10, at the La Quinta Hotel.
Burr Ridge Mayor Gary Grasso, a Republican, said that no state or City of Chicago officials contacted him about a bus of 64 migrants that showed up in his town at a Hampton Inn after initially arriving in Chicago.
Renae Eze, press secretary for Abbott, told Fox News Digital that Lightfoot and Pritzker are “absolute hypocrites.”
“So much for Chicago’s ‘Welcoming City Ordinance.’ These Democrat elites are absolute hypocrites, and now their hypocrisy is on full display for the entire nation. Governor Pritzker and Mayor Lightfoot have been complaining about a few hundred migrants being bused into self-declared sanctuary city Chicago, then turn around and dump them in the suburbs for Republican mayors to deal with. Instead of complaining about fulfilling their ‘welcoming city’ promises, these Democrat hypocrites should call on President Biden to do his job and secure the border—something the President continues failing to do,” she said.
Elk Grove Village Mayor Craig Johnson and Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Responding to complaints from Grasso of receiving no notice of the migrants arrival, Jordan Abudayyeh, press secretary for Pritzker, told WGN that it’s interesting local officials are complaining about the issue of migrants being bussed to suburbs.
“The state is working with our partners at the City of Chicago and Cook County along with advocacy organizations to welcome those seeking asylum in the United States and provide them stability as they work to build a new life in Illinois. The state has a prior relationship with the hotel being used in the suburbs and their staff has done amazing work welcoming refugees and asylum seekers before, so it is interesting that local officials are choosing this specific instance to gripe to the press about this specific group of asylum seekers that consists of about 30 families. Gov. Pritzker has made it clear that Illinois is [a] welcoming state and xenophobia has no home here,” Abudayyeh said.
Johnson called the governor’s response “wrong,” adding that he “owes our community an apology.”
The migrants who were taken to Burr Ridge will stay at a Hampton Inn for at least 30 days. (FOX 32)
“We don’t play those petty games. But to insult us, that we’re either being racist or we’re being uncaring. That is insulting,” Johnson said. “The governor owes our community an apology, and I’ll be waiting to hear that.”
Republican National Committee spokesperson Preya Samsundar also criticized both Lightfoot and Pritzker, and called on them to end their sanctuary city policies.
“After years of supporting Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’ open borders agenda, Lori Lightfoot and J.B. Pritzker are crying foul because they’re now forced to deal with the very issues they’ve shoved on southern border states. We welcome Lightfoot and Pritzker to end their sanctuary city policies and join Republicans in the fight to secure the border,” Samsundar said.
Adam Sabes is a writer for Fox News Digital. Story tips can be sent to [email protected] and on Twitter @asabes10.