TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Democratic leaders in Florida said they outlined a plan for the state legislature to put an end to Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis ordering the transport of migrants to other places.
The plan comes after dozens of migrants arrived Wednesday afternoon at Martha's Vineyard on behalf of DeSantis. The 50 migrants made up of men, women and children were flown on two planes to Massachusetts as part of what the Florida governor calls the state's relocation program.
Democratic leader Evan Jenne representing the 99th District in Florida and Democratic leader-designate Fentrice Driskell serving the 63rd House District in Hillsborough County said in a news release that they requested the state legislature to demand DeSantis in stopping the misuse of taxpayer money to transport migrants to other states.
"It seems that migrants were taken from Texas, brought to Florida, and then sent to Massachusetts for political purposes," Jenne and Driskell stated in a letter sent to Republican House Speaker Chris Sprowls and Republican Chair Jay Trumbull asking for the state funding to be stopped. "It is crystal clear that it [Section 185] was not intended to use state funds to transport migrants into the state solely so they could be deported to Massachusetts.
"This act is clearly contrary to the policy as written in the budget."
Democratic leaders repeated what DeSantis said: He plans to use all of the money funded in the program to continue the operate Florida's relocation program.
Records show the state of Florida paid $615,000 to an Oregon-based aviation company as part of the "relocation program to transport illegal immigrants to sanctuary destinations."
"The assertion that these people might have wanted to come to Florida is not a sufficient reason to intercept, deceive, and transport asylum seekers two thousand miles," Jenne and Driskell stated in the letter. "...The Governor has stated that he intends to 'spend every penny' of the $12 million available to him from this program.
"Because of that, we ask you to act to stop this inappropriate use of taxpayer dollars before it occurs again."
Democratic leaders' letter and their outline of the plan to prevent DeSantis from transporting migrants was announced Monday morning via Zoom to the Florida legislature, which can be viewed by clicking here.