Florida Republicans Insist Biden Declare Anticipated Haitian Migrant Wave

(StraightNews.org) – Republican lawmakers in Florida are calling on President Biden to declare “an anticipated mass migration” from violence-afflicted Haiti. GOP Rep. Matt Gaetz wrote to the President on March 18, asking him to deploy the US Navy to prevent a migrant wave. To do that, Biden must formally make the declaration, and Gaetz notes that the Navy can then help Floridian authorities repatriate migrants back to Haiti.

During an Armed Services Committee meeting in Congress on March 19, Mr. Gaetz expressed “deep concern” about a potential influx from the troubled nation and asked what the United States is doing to prepare for that eventuality. Rep. Gaetz furthermore demanded that arriving migrants must not be permitted to remain in the US but immediately returned.

Assistant Secretary for Homeland Defense and Hemispheric Affairs Rebecca Zimmerman told Gaetz that there is no indication yet that a mass influx is imminent. She conceded, however, that Rep. Gaetz is “right” and the possibility of migration from the troubled island is high.

Governor Ron DeSantis has similarly raised the alarm and, in mid-March, sent extra National Guard troops to the Florida Keys to prevent “an invasion.” Mr. DeSantis furthermore said he may send Haitian immigrants to Martha’s Vineyard if the federal government does not take action and enact strict migration policies in the wake of the unfolding crisis.

The Republican Governor has previously gone down that route and, in 2022, deployed two planes to the upmarket Massachusetts island containing around 50 illegal migrants. Mr. DeSantis described the operation as part of a “relocation program to transport illegal immigrants to sanctuary destinations.”

Around the same time, Texas Governor Greg Abbott similarly shipped immigrants to sanctuary cities, including New York and Chicago, where protests have erupted and leaders admit they are struggling to cope.

The Haitian wave is expected as the Caribbean nation continues to spiral into extreme violence. Gangs control around 80% of the capital, Port-au-Prince, and Prime Minister Ariel Henry has resigned.

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