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Republican Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker provided an update on migrants who were flown to Martha’s Vineyard this week, saying they were now being housed in Cape Cod.
Baker also shared a way for Americans to donate to the state in order to help the migrants, though he said the state agencies were already capable of meeting their needs. The migrants were transferred from Martha’s Vineyard to Joint Base Cape Cod on Friday, where they now have accommodations appropriate for families, Baker’s administration wrote in a statement.
The state activated 125 National Guardsmen for the move.
“The Commonwealth greatly appreciates the many generous offers of donations and help from people and organizations across the state,” the administration wrote. “Individuals and organizations looking to support emergency relief efforts like this should send an email to the Massachusetts Voluntary Organizations Active in Disasters at [email protected]”
“At this time all immediate needs of shelter clients are being met through existing resources provided by our state partners and the voluntary organizations assisting us in this temporary shelter operation,” the statement added.
Immigrants gather with their belongings outside St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Wednesday Sept. 14, 2022, in Edgartown, Mass., on Martha’s Vineyard. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis on Wednesday flew two planes of immigrants to Martha’s Vineyard, escalating a tactic by Republican governors to draw attention to what they consider to be the Biden administration’s failed border policies. (Ray Ewing/Vineyard Gazette via AP)
The group of 50 migrants first arrived in Martha’s Vineyard on planes chartered by Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis. DeSantis and Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, also Republican, have been sending busses and planes full of migrants to wealthy Democratic strongholds for months in an effort to get Democrats to take the border crisis seriously.
President Joe Biden has condemned the program as “reckless,” and lawyers for the migrants have called for a federal criminal probe.
“Republicans are playing politics with human beings, using them as props. What they’re doing is simply wrong, it’s un-American, it’s reckless,” Biden said last week.
“We have a process in place to manage migrants at the border,” he added. “We’re working to make sure it’s safe and orderly and humane. Republican officials should not interfere with that process by waging a politically political stance.”
DeSantis and Abbott have primarily targeted Washington, D.C., New York City and Chicago with the bussing programs. All three cities are overwhelmingly Democratic and also self-declared sanctuary cities for migrants.
Several busses have also arrived near the home of Vice President Kamala Harris, who Biden tapped to lead the administration’s border efforts earlier in his administration.
Editor’s note: A previous version of this article misidentified Baker as belonging to the Democratic Party.