Hobbs defends decision to continue Ducey's migrant busing program
Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs is defending her decision to continue former Gov. Doug Ducey’s program to transport migrants out of border communities.
Hobbs said in an interview with The Arizona Republic published Wednesday that her focus is on ensuring the state’s continued payment of migrants’ travel costs is “efficient and humane" and not a political stunt.
The program began in May under then-Gov. Doug Ducey and has expanded from using buses to include the option of air travel aboard a 737 aircraft.
Hobbs, a Democrat, said her focus differs from that of Republican governors Greg Abbott of Texas and Ron DeSantis of Florida, who have transported migrants to Democratic-run cities to make a political point.
Meanwhile, legislators in New Mexico are sponsoring a bill to prohibit local governments and state agencies from entering into contracts with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and private detention facilities to detain immigrants in civil cases.
The bill could unwind contractual arrangements at a major immigrant detention center in southern New Mexico and spur closer oversight at others.
Two Democratic senators sponsored the proposal with the backing of advocacy groups. The bill resembles recently enacted legislation in New Jersey, Virginia and Illinois aimed at ending detention in civil immigration cases in local facilities.