Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee (R) is blasting the Biden administration after finding out that “busloads” of illegal aliens would be sent to his state as part of President Joe Biden’s expansive catch-and-release program.
On Tuesday, the Republican governor revealed that he had been informed by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) that the agency would be sending “multiple busloads” of illegal aliens to Tennessee to await trial.
Lee said that he had been informed of the move on Monday, and called it “irresponsible.”
While it is unclear at the moment where these detainees will be housed or how many of them ICE will be transporting to Tennessee, Lee did confirm that they would be coming from New Orleans, Louisiana.
“We’ve been informed by ICE that they plan to release single adult detainees into Tennessee while they await court proceedings. This is irresponsible and a threat to the safety of Tennesseans,” the governor said in a statement. “It’s not compassionate to perpetuate a problem that leads to more exploitation and trafficking.”
We’ve been informed by ICE that they plan to release single adult detainees into TN while they await court proceedings. This is irresponsible & a threat to the safety of Tennesseans. https://t.co/L0Jl5UsL7F
— Gov. Bill Lee (@GovBillLee) December 20, 2022
Lee also noted that he would demand that the Biden administration reverse course, and instead focus on securing the southern border.
“This crisis is too big to ignore, and the only way to stop it is to secure the border,” he said. “Placing the burden on states is not a solution, and we should not bear the brunt of the federal government’s failures.”
Other Tennessee Republicans have also called out the Biden administration’s actions, including Sen. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) — who accused the administration of “trafficking illegal immigrants into communities across the country.”
Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-TN) spoke out about the issue, citing the deadly fentanyl being trafficked over the southern border and the shocking number of border crossings in 2022.
“In the last year, nearly three million migrants have illegally entered the country — a population larger than the largest four cities of Tennessee combined — Nashville, Memphis, Knoxville, and Chattanooga,” Hagerty said. “This does not even include the number of ‘gotaway’ migrants who illegally crossed into our country undetected.”
Tennessee Attorney General Jonathan Skrmetti (R) has stated that his office plans to explore all options to stop the Biden administration’s plan.
The governor appeared on Fox News on Wednesday to discuss the issue.
America is facing a national security crisis, & the only solution is to secure the southern border.
Tennesseans should not be forced to pay the price for the federal government’s failures. We demand answers from the Biden administration. pic.twitter.com/n5TsDE7f5S
— Gov. Bill Lee (@GovBillLee) December 21, 2022