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OPINION | COLUMNIST: For sanctuary cities, a rude awakening

by Erin Dwinell Tribune News Service | September 9, 2022 at 3:05 a.m.


Record numbers of illegal immigrants are entering the country and spreading throughout the interior of United States--and it's playing out in a sadly predictable way.

Sanctuary cities like Washington, D.C., New York City and Chicago are sagging under the weight of the cost required to support these new arrivals. Now their mayors are complaining about it, apparently surprised that their poor policies have played out, well . . . poorly.

Those policies are expensive, imposing tens of billions of dollars in costs on state and local governments and U.S. taxpayers every year. Increasingly, those costs are incurred by states nowhere near the southwest border.

Last year, a special committee found that taxpayers in Tennessee spend an extra $3.9 million per year to educate unaccompanied alien children in public schools and another $240,000 to provide them with state-funded health care.

Last year, Philadelphia elected to budget $300,000 to publicly fund immigration attorneys for aliens facing deportation. The New York City Council budgeted $16.6 million the same year for the same purpose.

That's been the case in Chicago, a city that continually increases its funding for its Legal Protection Fund and refuses to allow Immigration and Customs Enforcement access to police databases and information.

Then there are the costs associated with crime. Crimes committed by illegal aliens had been declining for years before Biden opened the borders. Since then, those numbers have skyrocketed in virtually every category.

Southern border governors are busing some illegal immigrants to New York City, Washington and Chicago, giving the mayors of those unashamedly pro-open borders and sanctuary cities a taste of what they've had to deal with for years.

Their mayors don't like it a bit. New York City's Eric Adams calls the situation there "horrific."

"We need help," pleads D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser.

This is typical of many on the left. They push for a supposedly compassionate globalist utopia. Then, when reality sets in and their pie in the sky agenda comes crashing down, they cry for help and bailouts.

It has never been clearer: The border crisis is not just a border-town issue. We face an unprecedented all-encompassing national security, fentanyl, crime and economic crisis that is seeping into every single state and community across the nation.

The Biden administration and the left must reverse its open-border agenda.


Erin Dwinell is a senior research associate in The Heritage Foundation's Border Security and Immigration Center.


Print Headline: A rude awakening

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