Democratic Rep. Jamaal Bowman of New York is calling out his own party and President Joe Biden for the worsening migrant crisis in the state, saying that Biden needs to show leadership and noting that the Democrats’ fortunes in the upcoming midterm elections could be gravely impacted by how the situation is handled.
Bowman made his comments to reporters, warning that the Democrats had very slim margins to make up in order to regain control of the House, making the migrants crisis a possible tipping point come the 2024 race.
“We need leadership from President Biden, period. We need that leadership right here in New York State, because you know, New York State is struggling,” Bowman said, according to a video captured by NY1. “We’re struggling to provide housing and all the support that the migrants need.”
With a 222-212 majority, Republicans currently hold control of the House of Representatives.
The Biden administration has said it is doing all it can to address the situation, including providing assistance to states and towns with the highest numbers of migrants and expanding processing centers to help the influx, as well as ensuring that those detained are treated adequately.
Nonetheless, the number of illegal crossings at the southern border have dropped overall since the Title 42 declaration was lifted in May. However, more than 93,000 migrants have arrived in New York City since last spring, and the city is straining under the increased resource demand.
People have started sleeping on the sidewalks in Manhattan, and migrant processing centers such as the Roosevelt Hotel are reaching capacity. To address the situation, more than 50 New York Democrats wrote a letter to Biden last month requesting federal aid for the city.
“We take pride in New York being a beacon of hope for immigrants, but the influx of migrants is so great that the City is running out of resources,” the lawmakers wrote.
With the situation leading potentially problematic for the Democratic Party in next year’s elections, Bowman asked for Biden to step up and take leadership on the issue.
“Here’s the thing, Democrats are looking bad right now in New York State, and that’s unacceptable when we have to win at least four congressional seats to take back the House,” Bowman said. “So hopefully the president is listening.”
Requests for a response from the White House were not immediately returned.
Congressmam @RepBowman spoke to media earlier about the influx of migrants.
Some of his thoughts: “We need leadership from Biden period.” He adds “Democrats in New York are looking bad right now.” pic.twitter.com/fiQa7bZN4v
— Kelly Mena (@KellyMena) August 8, 2023
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