Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody warned the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) against an investigation of Florida’s immigrant relocation program.
In a letter to the DOJ, Moody says that there is no legal basis for California’s request for the DOJ to investigate the program.
Moody’s letter responds to a request by California Governor Newsom and Attorney General to the DOJ to investigate Florida and defends the state’s actions to transport illegal immigrants to sanctuary cities on a volunteer basis.
The letter says that California’s request is a “political stunt” and not a legal request, as California’s letter does not identify any violation of a federal statute, judicial decision, or law.
“California’s letter requesting that the U.S. Department of Justice investigate Florida is a ridiculous political stunt. Our voluntary immigration relocation program is lawful, and California’s request fails to identify any violation of federal law,” stated Moody.
“As an Attorney General who leads hundreds of highly-qualified lawyers and has led dozens of legal challenges against this administration, it is jarring that California is not competent enough to articulate even a minimal legal basis for its request. I thought California loved to tout its commitment to illegal immigrants, but now its governor does not want more immigrants in California, claiming that more of them could break his state—how ironic,” Moody said.
Moody strongly urges the DOJ to “not bail out California” or engage in “another political” investigation.
As the Tampa Free Press reported earlier this month, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis called it “absurd” for California Gov. Gavin Newsom to request a federal investigation into Florida directing flights of migrants last month from Texas to Sacramento.
Appearing on Fox Business, DeSantis defended Florida’s use of a taxpayer-funded program to transport migrants, while criticizing California as a “sanctuary” state.
“They’re serving really as a magnet for people to cross our border illegally,” DeSantis said.
As he runs for the Republican presidential nomination, DeSantis has made President Joe Biden’s handling of immigration and the Southwest U.S. border a key campaign issue.
Newsom and California Attorney General Rob Bonta, both Democrats, asked U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland to investigate the June 2 and June 5 migrant flights to California.
Those flights followed Florida flying migrants from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts last September. Critics have said DeSantis has used migrants as “pawns.”
Attorneys for some of the migrants sent to Martha’s Vineyard, and the advocacy group Alianza Americas filed a potential class-action lawsuit, alleging the asylum seekers were “tricked” into going from Texas to Massachusetts.
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