On Thursday (September 8), Washington, D.C., mayor Muriel Bowser announced a public emergency after the latest busload of immigrants from Texas and Arizona arrived in the nation’s capital.
In her announcement, Bowser said she would be setting up a new “Office of Migrant Services” that would assist with the emergency.
She estimated that 9,400 migrants had been dropped off since April and predicted hundreds more would come this fall.
Speaking at a press conference, Bowser lamented that “What we’re dealing with is a big unknown,” bemoaning that it is “an unknown being imposed on us,” adding, “We’re not a border town.”
Over the spring, Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) and Arizona Governor Doug Ducey (R) began bussing migrants to so-called sanctuary cities, New York City, Chicago, and Washington, D.C.
The concerted effort is a protest against Biden’s lax border policies that have left border towns struggling with the resources needed to maintain the migrants.
Bowser’s public emergency announcement isn’t the first drastic step she’s taking to help inundated D.C. deal with the influx of migrants.
In July and August, Bowser requested assistance from the D.C. National Guard but was rebuffed by the Pentagon, which called the request “inappropriate.”
But Bowser is adamant she’ll persist in her dialogue with the federal government on the issue she referred to as a “political stunt.”
In a statement, Bowser said, “This is a new challenge for DC, but I feel confident that if we lead with our values, and if we put the right systems in place, which we are doing with the Office of Migrant Services, then we will lead a response that makes our community proud.”