Democratic New Jersey Gov. Phil Murphy said he doesn’t “see any scenario” where his state can take in migrants from New York City, despite the Biden administration’s potential plan to send them there, NJ.com reported on Thursday.
The Biden administration is considering relocating a number of migrants from New York City to New Jersey’s Atlantic City International Airport amid a surging national migrant crisis, according to NJ.com. Murphy, who previously suggested New Jersey would become a “sanctuary” state for migrants, said the plan would not work and suggested the border needed increased security to prevent the U.S. from becoming “the Wild West.”
“I don’t see any scenario where we’re going to be able to take in a program in Atlantic City, or frankly elsewhere in the state,” Murphy said during News 12 New Jersey’s “Ask Governor Murphy” on Thursday, NJ.com reported. “You need scale, enormous amount of federal support, resources that go beyond anything that we can afford. Putting everything else aside, I just don’t see it. I would suspect that that will continue to be the case.”
Murphy said that the U.S. should “responsibly and humanely secure our borders” while also providing an accessible path to status for millions of illegal immigrants, according to NJ.com. He also suggested that the visa system needed overhaul in order to attract migrants to jobs that the country is “having a hard time filling.”
“We’ve always been a nation of immigrants, but that doesn’t mean it can be the Wild West,” Murphy said.
Biden’s plan was outlined in a letter sent to New York City Mayor Eric Adams that listed 11 federally owned locations migrants could potentially be rerouted to from the Big Apple, including New Jersey’s Atlantic City International Airport. The plan comes amid a swelling crisis in New York as the state has taken in over 100,000 migrants with more on the way.
New York Gov. Kathy Hochul and New York City Mayor Eric Adams have been at odds as to handle the crisis, with Adams most recently claiming that Hochul is “wrong” for suggesting the city should not bus migrants into the suburbs.
Atlantic County is one of the poorest counties in New Jersey, and Biden’s plan to send migrants there has sparked bipartisan outrage from local officials who vowed to try and stop it from coming to fruition, according to Politico.
“All I can say is that I will do my best to prevent this from happening,” Republican Atlantic County Executive Dennis Levinson said in an interview, according to Politico. “We can’t afford it. We’re a poor county. We’re one of the poorest counties in New Jersey. It’s not a burden I can put on our taxpayers.”
“It is inappropriate and unreasonable to expect South Jersey to bear the consequences of policy choices we did not make nor want,” Republic New Jersey Rep. Jeff Van Drew said, NJ.com reported.
Murphy, Adams, Hochul and the White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
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