Denver Mayor Johnston Calls on Texas Gov. Abbott to Send Migrants in ‘Humanitarian Way’

Denver Mayor Mike Johnston said Sunday on CBS’s “Face the Nation” said that Gov. Greg Abbott (R-TX) needed to coordinate sending migrants to cities so it can be done in a “humanitarian way.”

Partial transcript as follows:

MARGARET BRENNAN: Mr. Mayor of Denver, to be clear here, I know that you have looked at New York and Chicago making decisions to restrict bus arrivals. Are you trying to take measures in your city to restrict them from even arriving in the first place?

MAYOR JOHNSTON: No, all we want is a system that is- that is humanitarian for both the new folks that are arriving and for our cities and our city employees. And so, we understand there will be an inflow, we have already had 35,000 migrants arrive to Denver, we’ve successfully helped them integrate into the country here. What we don’t want is people arriving at 2:00 in the morning at a city and county building with women and children outside in 10-degree weather and no support. And so, we want buses here to do what every other bus does, which is land at a bus station and a bus stop at hours when we can have staff there to receive them and to direct them towards services. And so we understand the flow is coming. We just want it to be coordinated, and in a humanitarian way, which we think makes it effective for the city and for those newcomers. That means things like arriving 8:00-5:00, Monday to Friday, with notice.

MARGARET BRENNAN: Right. And I understand that you haven’t been able to get the state of Texas to stop sending people. But when it comes to your party’s leadership, as Senator Graham said, you have asked the White House for more help. Did they respond to your public call?

MAYOR JOHNSTON: Yeah, we’ve talked to the White House. We’ve talked to leadership there, and we think they agree on the core needs that we see. I mean, we think this is a solvable problem. There are key priorities we need. We need federal dollars to help support our work here in the cities. We also need federal dollars for more support at the border, the ability to adjudicate asylum claims more quickly so they can be done in 90 days and not in four to six years. That makes a massive difference. If we have the resources for cities to support us, if we have, when people arrive, we actually have work authorization when they get to a place like Denver so we can put them to work, which is what they want. And we have a coordinated entry plan where it’s not just the governor of Texas deciding what cities to send people to.

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN


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