Sending migrants to Martha’s Vineyard may have been criminal

David Pakman
Liberal Opinion

David Pakman

Host of The David Pakman Show
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Ron DeSantis, the Republican governor of Florida, is getting mixed reviews for his decision to fly 48 Venezuelan migrants from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard. Minority Leader Mitch McConnell has indicated he likes the idea of southern state governors transporting migrants up north, because “if you added up all of the (immigrants) who’ve been taken to Chicago or Washington or Martha’s Vineyard, it would be fewer than people down in Texas have to deal with on a daily basis.”

Texas Sheriff Javier Salazar, on the other hand, said he has opened a criminal investigation into the matter to see if any laws were broken. In a news conference, Salazar said it was clear that many of the migrants had been misled and lured away from Texas to score political points. Straight Arrow News contributor David Pakman agrees, and explains why he thinks the political stunt backfired.

So the idea of DeSantis was, you know what, it’s really easy to love immigrants coming in here, into Texas, or into Florida, or into wherever on the southern border, not that Florida is on the border, but it’s close. It’s very easy when you’re up in Massachusetts, or in New York City or in Westchester, whatever the case may be. Let’s prove a point by sending these undesirables, this is their view, of course, up to a place like Martha’s Vineyard. 

Now, it’s completely backfired in a few ways. First of all, we have learned that the immigrants were lied to, they were deceived. They were told we’re going to get you up to Boston – now, of course, Martha’s Vineyard is not Boston – and we’re going to help you find jobs. And we’re still learning about all of the lies that were actually told. 

So first of all, it was dishonest. 

And this may actually be criminal. This may be criminal human trafficking. When you look at what is the definition of human trafficking, one of the things that’s there is, if you lie or deceive, you’re basically fraudulently luring someone to go here, there or the other place – that can be the crime of human trafficking. It’s a federal crime. 

And one of the things that we have to think about is, imagine if you lure a young woman from another country to come to the U.S., you claim, I’m going to help you get a job in whatever industry, and then you end up pushing her into prostitution. And then her legal status is not, it does, she does not have legal status. That is human trafficking. 

And when you lie and say, we’re gonna fly you up to Boston and help you get a job, and really, you dump these folks in Martha’s Vineyard and say good luck, it also could be against the law. 

And then we have the kind of last part of it, which is that as these immigrants were initially welcomed, and fed and housed, but ultimately, because Martha’s Vineyard economy is very small and it’s very seasonal, and we’re heading into low season where there’s very few tourists, there’s no jobs on Martha’s Vineyard. 

So the idea that they’ve been coming up with the right-wingers is 50 people can’t stay in Martha’s Vineyard and you want Texas to take 20,000? Well, hold on a second, let’s back that up.

Martha’s Vineyard is this unique, tiny economy, mostly a summer based economy, low housing stock, low job stock. It’s not really representative of anything to say these folks are going to be better off somewhere else, particularly during the off season. 

So every little element of this thing we’ve learned was dishonesty, potentially on top of criminality, potentially on top of whatever else, it has backfired completely in the space that thinks critically. 

It still does seem like the right-wingers think this was a great point that was proven. It wasn’t and if there was criminality, the criminals should be held accountable.

Let’s talk about this absolutely horrible migrant stunt that Ron DeSantis, the Florida Republican governor pulled, sending a bunch of immigrants from Texas, up to Martha’s Vineyard, the vacation heavy island off the coast of Massachusetts. It’s part of the state of Massachusetts. 

This is truly, as we have learned more and more about it, this has really become one of the most disgusting and immoral political stunts in a long time. 

Now, before we knew any of the specifics, we already knew it didn’t really make sense. Why didn’t it make sense? Well, DeSantis is the governor of Florida. He paid, the state of Florida paid, to fly migrants from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard. 

What does that even have to do with Florida? Well, DeSantis claimed some of those migrants that were in Texas, were eventually going to come to Florida. Very, very shaky, to even begin with. 

Secondly, Ron DeSantis used $12 million of taxpayer money to fly these individuals and to get them all the way to Martha’s Vineyard. 

And if he really wanted to do something economically stimulative for the state of Florida, what he could have done is say, hey, you know what, we’re going to use a fraction of that money for housing, and job training. 

And remember how they say, oh, employers can’t find workers. Let’s get these folks trained up, and in growing industries, helping to grow the tech, the Florida economy. 

But of course, that’s not the point. The point is just to prove a political point. 

So then we get to why Martha’s Vineyard? Well, the idea is, as a general rule, most of the states that the politics suggest a sort of more forgiving immigration policy, on average, are up in the northeast. There’s certainly a number of more liberal states in the northeast, you’ve got Maine, New Hampshire not so much, but Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York, and Rhode Island, to some degree. 

So the idea of DeSantis was, you know what, it’s really easy to love immigrants coming in here, into Texas, or into Florida, or into wherever on the southern border, not that Florida is on the border, but it’s close. It’s very easy when you’re up in Massachusetts, or in New York City or in Westchester, whatever the case may be. Let’s prove a point by sending these undesirables, this is their view, of course, up to a place like Martha’s Vineyard. 

Now, it’s completely backfired in a few ways. First of all, we have learned that the immigrants were lied to, they were deceived. They were told we’re going to get you up to Boston – now, of course, Martha’s Vineyard is not Boston – and we’re going to help you find jobs. And we’re still learning about all of the lies that were actually told. 

So first of all, it was dishonest. 

And this may actually be criminal. This may be criminal human trafficking. When you look at what is the definition of human trafficking, one of the things that’s there is, if you lie or deceive, you’re basically fraudulently luring someone to go here, there or the other place – that can be the crime of human trafficking. It’s a federal crime. 

And one of the things that we have to think about is, imagine if you lure a young woman from another country to come to the U.S., you claim, I’m going to help you get a job in whatever industry, and then you end up pushing her into prostitution. And then her legal status is not, it does, she does not have legal status. That is human trafficking. 

And when you lie and say, we’re gonna fly you up to Boston and help you get a job, and really, you dump these folks in Martha’s Vineyard and say good luck, it also could be against the law. 

And then we have the kind of last part of it, which is that as these immigrants were initially welcomed, and fed and housed, but ultimately, because Martha’s Vineyard economy is very small and it’s very seasonal, and we’re heading into low season where there’s very few tourists, there’s no jobs on Martha’s Vineyard. 

So the idea that they’ve been coming up with the right-wingers is 50 people can’t stay in Martha’s Vineyard and you want Texas to take 20,000? Well, hold on a second, let’s back that up.

Martha’s Vineyard is this unique, tiny economy, mostly a summer based economy, low housing stock, low job stock. It’s not really representative of anything to say these folks are going to be better off somewhere else, particularly during the off season. 

So every little element of this thing we’ve learned was dishonesty, potentially on top of criminality, potentially on top of whatever else, it has backfired completely in the space that thinks critically. 

It still does seem like the right-wingers think this was a great point that was proven. It wasn’t and if there was criminality, the criminals should be held accountable.

 


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