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First bus of illegal immigrants from Texas arrives in DC

A bus from Texas carrying dozens of illegal immigrants arrived in Washington, D.C., on Wednesday morning, allowing passengers to disembark just blocks away from the U.S. Capitol, according to a Fox News report.

Governor Greg Abbott (R-Texas) announced last week that he directed the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) to “charter buses and flights to transport migrants who have been processed and released from federal custody to Washington, D.C.,” in response to the Biden administration’s plan to rescind Title 42.

But critics on both the left and right were quick to slam the Texas governor’s plan as a “publicity stunt” and “gimmick” when they found out that illegal immigrants “must volunteer” and “show documentation from DHS” to be transported to the Capitol.

Press secretary Jen Psaki said “I think it’s pretty clear this is a publicity stunt” when asked what the Biden administration planned to do in response to Gov. Abbott’s initiative. “His own office admits that a migrant would need to voluntarily be transported, and then he can’t compel them to because, again, enforcement of our country’s immigration laws lies with the federal government and not a state,” she added.

Even Republican state Rep. Matt Schaefer called the plan a “gimmick” in a tweet shortly after Abbott’s press conference announcing his plan.

Nevertheless, a bus from the Del Rio sector in Texas reportedly pulled up just blocks away from the U.S. Capitol building around 8 a.m. local time on Wednesday, to drop off dozens of immigrants said to be from Colombia, Cuba, Nicaragua, and Venezuela.

“In the last 24 hours, TDEM has dispatched buses to areas where communities have expressed concerns about the federal government dropping off migrants and has the capability to send as many as is necessary to fulfill the requests from mayors and county judges,” Seth Christensen, chief of media and communications for TDEM, told Fox News.

“From the [Rio Grande Valley] to Terrell County, a large majority of the communities that originally reached out for support through this operation have now said that the federal government has stopped dropping migrants in their towns since the governor’s announcement on Wednesday,” Christensen added.

A tweet from Gov. Abbott’s account on Wednesday boasted, “First Texas bus drops off illegal immigrants blocks from US Capitol in Washington, DC. Biden refuses to come see the mess he’s made at the border. So Texas is bringing the border to him.”

First Texas bus drops off illegal immigrants blocks from US Capitol in Washington, DC.nnBiden refuses to come see the mess heu2019s made at the border.nnSo Texas is bringing the border to him.https://www.foxnews.com/politics/texas-migrant-bus-arrives-washington-d-cu00a0u2026

— Greg Abbott (@Greg Abbott)
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Naturally, the reception on social media was mixed:

Texas Governor Abbott actually did it. First bus unloads illegal migrants in Washington DC.pic.twitter.com/gVpGBTDrcY

— Big Fish (@Big Fish)
1649860366

If the migrants are asked if they want to go to DC and they say yes…then they are just basically getting a free ride there…right? When they are being released they are free to go wherever they want..they choose DC. So isn’t Texas just giving them a free ride where they chose?

— Bobbie Carr (@Bobbie Carr)
1649855629

Very good. Next bus # Delaware in front of biden’s estate. There’s plenty of room for tents.

— George Rock (@George Rock)
1649855406

So you kidnapped people?

— Kim Ikpo (@Kim Ikpo)
1649861198

They chose to go to DC.https://www.cnn.com/2022/04/06/us/texas-immigrants-charter-buses-dc/index.htmlu00a0u2026

— birthdaycake (@birthdaycake)
1649856944

Of course itu2019s a publicity stunt. But an amazing, genius publicity stunt. One that forces media to cover the issue.

— Mad Scientist (@Mad Scientist)
1649358730

Yea, @GregAbbott_TX , @GovAbbott is the man alright. It is my Texas governor. We are glad we have him to protect us and keep us safe. Now all we need is the other 49 governors to run their state according to our United States Constitution.

— Piano Music (@Piano Music)
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Best news in a long time!

— Dianne (@Dianne)
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Here are more details as reported by Fox News: