New York Governor urges Biden to help the state with the increase in immigrants

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Governor Kathy Hochul on Thursday implored President Joe Biden to take urgent action to help her state absorb a surge of international immigrants who have depleted resources and filled homeless shelters, putting some Democrats in a position vulnerable in a state. generally seen as friendly to immigrants .

In a rare public speech, Hochul said he had sent the president a letter asking him to expedite work permits for immigrants and provide financial resources to help serve the estimated 100,000 asylum seekers who have arrived in the state in the past year, in mostly to New York. York City.

"The reality is that up to now we have gotten by without substantial support from Washington, and despite the fact that this is a national and indeed an inherently federal issue," Hochul said in a speech in Albany. "But New York has borne this burden for far too long."

The central request of the governor's letter was for the president to speed up the months-long bureaucratic process by which immigrants can obtain work permits and earn enough money to avoid receiving public assistance.

"Let them work," Hochul said, speaking to the White House.

The Mayor of New York, Eric Adams also a Democrat, has repeatedly made an identical demand.

A White House spokesman did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment.

New York has always prided itself on its ability to absorb waves of immigrants, but it has struggled to handle the thousands who have arrived over the past year, many of them on buses paid for by the state of Texas. for get rid of people entering the United States through the southern border.

New York Democrats initially blamed Republican governors in southern states for the crisis, but have increasingly tried to characterize it as a national problem that should be solved by the federal government.

The situation has also given state Republicans a new political front from which to attack Democrats after an election year in which the GOP made gains by criticizing Democrats for being slow to respond to crime concerns. .

“Kathy Hochul's solution after so many months of discomfort is to write a forceful letter to Joe Biden? Come on, it's nothing serious," said David Laska, spokesman for the New York Republican Party.

The situation has also created tension among Democrats. As New York City's homeless shelter system became overwhelmed and the cost of accommodate migrants in hotels and temporary shelters increased, Adams began organizing his own bus trips to take migrants to other parts of the state, much to the frustration of officials in those communities.

Lawyers for Hochul and Adams have argued in court about the best way to house and expend resources to care for immigrants.

The state has earmarked up to $1.5 billion for its response to migrants. Hochul asked Biden for financial assistance to help cover those costs and the $4.5 billion needed for next year. In addition, the Governor requested that the city and state be allowed to use federally owned property to house immigrants.

New York City shelters have been near capacity and officials have scrambled to set up temporary housing in hotels, recreation centers, school gyms and the hospital parking lot. The city is legally required to find shelter for anyone who needs it.

Republicans already see the response to this wave of immigrants as an opportunity to campaign in the 2024 election.

“New Yorkers will not forget what happened under the leadership of Kathy Hochul,” Laska said. "They will not forget that communities across the state have been pushed beyond their ability to handle this influx of immigrants and the real solution is to close the border."

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Nathan Rivera
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