Governor Ducey Responds to DC, New York City Mayors’ Complaints of Migrants Bused In From Arizona

Governor Ducey Responds to DC, New York City Mayors’ Complaints of Migrants Bused In From Arizona

By Corinne Murdock |

Governor Doug Ducey told Democratic mayors of the nation’s capital and most populous city, respectively, that they shouldn’t complain to him about asylum seekers, but should petition their party since it bears ultimate responsibility. Since April, Texas and Arizona have sent over 4,000 migrants to D.C. 

Washington, D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser complained to CBS News that Ducey and Texas Governor Greg Abbott were “tricking” illegal immigrants seeking asylum into boarding buses headed for her city. Bowser said that these buses were overwhelming D.C.’s homeless shelters. 

“I fear that they’re being tricked into nationwide bus trips when their final destinations are places all over the United States of America,” said Bowser.

The D.C.-based news outlet, WUSA9reported that several asylum seekers were told by Texas and Arizona officials that they would be given further transportation to their final destinations after traveling to D.C. These accounts would corroborate Bowser’s claim.

However, Ducey asserted that Arizona only provided asylum seekers with voluntary transportation to Washington, D.C. Additionally, the governor insisted that the mayor was getting a taste of her party’s own policies. 

“Welcome to our world, @MayorBowser. Now work with your party, your Congress, and your President to do something about it,” stated Ducey. 

Ducey added that the only “trick” played on asylum seekers is one played by the Biden administration.

Ducey later tweeted that Bowser’s accusations were offensive to the homeless shelters and nonprofits of Arizona and other border states because they’re also overwhelmed.

In a statement to WUSA9, Ducey’s communications director, C.J. Karamargin, said that they were unaware of anyone misleading the asylum seekers.

“If anyone is being misled, we certainly want to know about it,” stated Karamargin. 

Abbott spokespersons also declared to WUSA9 that they didn’t mislead the asylum seekers. 

Ducey also dismissed New York City Mayor Eric Adams’ claim that Arizona sent migrant families to New York City, saying that Arizona only sent them to D.C.

“President Biden created the crisis at the border — he’s failed to respond to calls for action and refuses to even visit the border, so we’re bringing the issue a little closer to home for him,” tweeted Ducey. “The President’s policies have placed overwhelming burdens on Arizona communities. It’s convenient that these liberal mayors are finally speaking up on this humanitarian crisis once it affects their communities, even though our program does not charter to New York City.” 

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

May Border Crossings Reaches Another All-Time High

May Border Crossings Reaches Another All-Time High

By Corinne Murdock |

The latest border crossing data published this week revealed another all-time high of over 239,400, indicating that President Joe Biden’s border crisis won’t be getting better anytime soon. The latest number marked a 300 percent increase from the average May number under former President Donald Trump. 

Under Biden, there have been 3.3 illegal immigrants encountered. So far this year, there have been over 1.5 illegal immigrants encountered.

Customs and Border Patrol (CBP) data showed that the number of illegal immigrants encountered climbed from nearly 235,500 in April. The number of illegal crossings spiked in March after a drop in January, which still registered a record high of over 154,800 crossings.

Recidivism rates more than doubled from pre-pandemic levels. They dropped from 14 percent in 2015 to 7 percent in 2019. The rate has been climbing steadily from 26 percent in 2020, to 27 percent in 2021.

As reported previously, the CBP data only reflects encounters. The actual number of illegal crossings are estimated to be much higher. “Gotaways” reflect illegal immigrants that weren’t apprehended. 

CBP sources informed Fox News that there have been around 830,000 gotaways since about the time Biden took office at the beginning of last year: about 440,000 this year so far, with about 390,000 in 2021. 

Biden hasn’t tweeted any formal statements on the southern border since last September, when he lamented over the treatment of illegal Haitian immigrants by Border Patrol. In recent months, Biden has focused on Ukraine’s border. 

Rather, the president’s latest statements on the border focused on ensuring “humane and coordinated border management systems.” During an endorsement event for the Los Angeles Declaration on Migration and Protection, Biden did condemn illegal immigration. He noted that the government is partnering with Mexico to conduct “mirror patrols,” in which Border Patrol agents from both countries mirror one another’s patrol along the border.

“Unlawful migration is not acceptable, and we’ll secure our borders, including through innovative, coordinated actions with our regional partners,” said Biden. 

The declaration served as a unified statement pledging community assistance, legal immigration pathway expansion, humane migration management, and coordinated emergency responses. Of note, the declaration promised to increase public and private services for migrants, expand labor migration pathways for migrants, and expand regular pathways for migrants.

In Wednesday’s press briefing, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre didn’t address the latest CBP numbers, instead focusing on Ukraine’s borders. Jean-Pierre didn’t touch the border crisis during Thursday’s press briefing, either. 

Over the last few weeks, Jean-Pierre has cut the questions portion of press briefings short — much to the chagrin of reporters. Jean-Pierre ended Wednesday’s press briefing after taking reporters’ questions for 13 minutes. 

Following viral criticism over keeping the questions portion of press briefings short, Jean-Pierre fielded questions for about 42 minutes during Thursday’s press briefing. 

Last month, the Arizona House GOP issued a legislative proclamation denouncing Biden for his handling of the border crisis. 

Senators Mark Kelly (D-AZ) and Kyrsten Sinema (D-AZ) claimed credit for mitigating the border crisis within Congress’ annual budget bill: nearly 2.3 billion for CBP hiring and retention, CBP mental health and clinicians, CBP border management costs, ICE border management costs, border security technology, ports of entry technology, ports of entry feasibility study, creation of joint processing centers, food and shelter for migrants, transportation for migrants, and asylum processing.

However, the increased spending may not have a greater impact than the previous decisions by the two senators which arguably have contributed to the crisis. 

Back in December, Kelly and Sinema voted with their colleagues to confirm Chris Magnus as the new CBP commissioner. Magnus has denied the existence of the border crisis repeatedly. During his tenure as chief of police in Tucson, Magnus told officials not to enforce immigration laws and instead continue with sanctuary city policies.

The two also voted to send stimulus checks to illegal immigrants, adding onto two crises in one blow: the inflation crisis, and the border crisis. 

Exactly one year ago, the Biden administration claimed that Trump broke the immigration system, characterizing it as all “chaos and mismanagement,” and that border numbers would fluctuate based on annual migration trends. The number of illegal border crossings have only gone up since then.

Last April, Biden claimed that they had gotten the border under control. 

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

Legislature Passes Bill Ensuring Only U.S. Citizens Can Vote in Our Elections—And the Left Is Freaking Out

Legislature Passes Bill Ensuring Only U.S. Citizens Can Vote in Our Elections—And the Left Is Freaking Out

By the Arizona Free Enterprise Club |

Arizona voters received a big win yesterday. The State Senate passed HB2492 less than a month after the House did the same. And now this critical bill heads to Governor Ducey’s desk to be signed into state law.

This is a big win toward restoring the integrity of Arizona’s elections. HB2492 will safeguard our state’s voter rolls and ensure only U.S. citizens are voting in our elections. You would think this sort of legislation is something everyone could get behind. But apparently, the Democrats have a vested interest in allowing non-citizens to vote in our elections.

That’s why they’ve been spreading lies about HB2492 for months.

>>> CONTINUE READING >>>

Almost 154k Southwest Border Crossings in January, Highest in Over 20 Years

Almost 154k Southwest Border Crossings in January, Highest in Over 20 Years

By Corinne Murdock |

According to the latest data released by the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), law enforcement encountered nearly 154,000 illegal immigrants crossing the Southwest border. This number doesn’t include those illegal immigrants who evaded apprehension, known as “gotaways”: different than those who evade encounters entirely, or go through the catch-and-release process.

According to CBP data obtained through Border Patrol and by Townhall, CNN, and The Washington Post compiled by the Republican National Committee (RNC), over 504,600 estimated gotaways have occurred since President Joe Biden was sworn in. Former and current border officials clarified that those estimates are conservative. National Border Patrol Council’s Rio Grande Valley Chapter Vice President and Spokesman Chris Cabrera told Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) that the actual number of gotaways is likely “twice, if not three times” the Biden Administration’s November estimate of around 400,000 — which would be around 1.2 million.

Border officials’ projections of illegal immigrant numbers dwarfing the Biden Administration’s reports are supported by the symptoms felt by Arizona’s communities: overcrowded detention centers, frequent apprehensions of violent criminals, crops destroyed, and covert migrant shelter operations housed next door.

As evidenced by the CBP chart “Southwest Land Border Encounters by Month,” encounters remain far above those over the last three years. Unlike the last three years, however, there’s been a sharp downturn in encounters from December to January. Similar sharp downturn trends occurred in 2016 and 2017. Overall, Southwest border encounters dropped about 14 percent from December to January: 19 percent for the Office of Field Operations (OFO) and nearly 14 percent for U.S. Border Patrol. 

CBP’s latest numbers come nearly a month after the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) told Reuters that the country should expect the border crisis to worsen throughout 2022. A majority of Arizona law enforcement expressed support for mitigation efforts proposed by Governor Doug Ducey: federal legislation to increase border security through completing border wall, physical barriers, and virtual surveillance; requiring asylum seekers to show proof of attempt to claim asylum prior to crossing and at a port of entry; increasing the number of immigration judges; and increasing funding for local law enforcement and humanitarian efforts.

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.

House Committee Passes Bill Barring Illegal Immigrants From Voting

House Committee Passes Bill Barring Illegal Immigrants From Voting

By Corinne Murdock |

The House Government and Elections Committee passed a bill prohibiting illegal immigrants from voting, HB2492, on Wednesday. The bill would require those registering to vote to prove their residential address, date and place of birth, and affirmation that they are a citizen using a U.S. Election Assistance Commission form. 

If an applicant fails to offer satisfactory proof of citizenship, then the county must attempt to verify the applicant’s citizenship status within 10 days using, at minimum, information from the Department of Transportation (ADOT), Social Security Administration (SSA), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program, National Association for Public Health Statistics and Information Systems Electronic Verification of Vital Events, and any other databases that the elections official has access to within the state, city, town, county, or federal government. 

Election officials that refuse to reject a registration form would be subject to a class six felony. If officials find proof that the applicant isn’t an American citizen, then they must notify the applicant of their rejection and refer the case to both the county attorney and attorney general for further investigation. However, if an election official can’t find any citizenship information whatsoever, then they will only notify the applicant of their rejection and offer them 30 days to respond with evidence of citizenship. 

The bill would impact federal-only voters — those who made a substantial impact in the 2020 election — because applicants without satisfactory citizenship proof wouldn’t be qualified to vote in federal elections. Exemptions would be carved out for those under the Uniformed And Overseas Citizens Absentee Voting Act (UOCAVA), such as military members.

Furthermore, the bill requires that county officials make records of all their efforts to verify an applicant’s citizenship status. They must also present a list of all individuals who registered to vote and haven’t provided satisfactory evidence of citizenship by Halloween of this year. At that point, the attorney general would have until the end of next March to determine each applicant’s citizenship status and submit a report to the secretary of state, senate president, and house speaker.

The legislation sponsor, State Representative Jake Hoffman (R-Queen Creek), explained that the number of individuals who hadn’t shown Documentary Proof of Citizenship (DPOC) went from 1,700 in 2018 to over 11,000 in 2020. 

Hoffman worked with the Arizona Free Enterprise Club to draft the bill, whose deputy director, Greg Blackie, offered testimony to the committee recounting Arizonans’ history of supporting citizenship requirements for voting, citing the state’s approval of Prop 200 in 2004: the Arizona voter-approved initiative that made citizenship a qualification to register to vote. 

Both the federal and state government worked to undermine Prop 200. Although the National Voter Registration Act (NVRA) requires states to use its federal form for voter registration, Blackie explained that the Election Assistance Commission (EAC) must consult with each state to include tailored instructions on that state’s voter qualifications; however, the EAC hasn’t included Arizona’s requirement of proof of citizenship. In 2013, the Supreme Court overturned Prop 200, ruling that the NVRA preempted Arizona’s proof of citizenship requirement. In 2018, Arizona’s secretary of state and the Maricopa County recorder agreed to a consent decree ignoring Prop 200. 

“The result has been the complete proliferation of the federal-only voters list,” stated Blackie. “This bill really is necessary to safeguard our voter rolls, ensuring only qualified applicants are properly registered and voting in our elections, restoring confidence and ensuring in Arizona it’s easy to vote, hard to cheat.”

In announcing her vote against the bill, State Representative Sarah Ligouri (D-Phoenix) argued Arizona’s voter registration processes and ID processes are “completely secure.” Liguori said that Arizona should strike down this bill, as Kansas and Alabama did for similar bills.

“I think this legislation is unnecessary and impunitive to newly-registered and new citizen voters,” said Liguori. 

The bill passed 7-6 on party lines. 

Corinne Murdock is a reporter for AZ Free News. Follow her latest on Twitter, or email tips to corinne@azfreenews.com.