Ron DeSantis received a standing ovation during a speech in Kansas City after mentioning the stunt where he sent two planes loaded with migrants to Martha’s Vineyard.
The governor of Florida was warmly applauded on Sunday for sending 50 people to the island off Massachusetts last week.
He also called the influx of migrants into the US a “crisis”, but said it was “getting a bit more attention now”.
On Wednesday, DeSantis flew 50 migrants to the luxury island before they were taken by officials to a military base on Cape Cod.
Furious locals blasted the move and said they were relieved they weren’t staying as there were no facilities to care for them.
It comes as the governor of Florida set a record fundraising total for his gubernatorial campaign.
It has raked in $177.4 million as of September 9, according to a report by Open Secrets.
DeSantis is up for re-election this fall, after a tenure that saw him barely win the governorship in 2018 to become one of the GOP’s hottest stars.
DeSantis received the standing ovation as he spoke at a rally for Wisconsin gubernatorial candidate Tim Michels in Olathe, Kansas
Florida Governor Ron DeSantis received a standing ovation during a speech in Kansas City after mentioning his stunt where he sent two planes loaded with migrants to Martha’s Vineyard.
One of fifty migrants (left) Ron DeSantis had flown to Martha’s Vineyard as part of a political stunt
‘It’s a crisis. It’s now getting a little more attention,’ DeSantis said during Sunday’s speech, while explaining how he thinks the move succeeded in generating the kind of attention he was hoping for.
“This border is now an issue in these elections,” he said. “And I think that’s something our candidates have to take.”
As the crowd rose to applaud the Republican governor, it became clear that the move did more than force border security to the fore, but also secured DeSantis’ position as a potential candidate to compete with Donald Trump for the 2024 GOP presidential ticket.
DeSantis received the standing ovation as he spoke at a rally for Wisconsin gubernatorial candidate Tim Michels in Olathe, Kansas.
DeSantis defended his actions and claimed the migrants knew exactly where they were going and voluntarily signed up for the trip
Pictured: A group of 50 migrants enjoyed Venezuelan food at the military base after Martha’s Vineyard declared an emergency when the group arrived
About 150 members of the National Guard were called in to transport the migrants from the island to the military base on Cape Cod 32 miles away
The crowd rose as DeSantis explained how sending just 50 migrants to the wealthy island enclave of Martha’s Vineyard demonstrated liberal hypocrisy and sanctuary city rhetoric.
“You’re talking about 50 people. Did they hire them? Did they set them up? No, he said. “They called the National Guard and they kicked those people off the island the next day.”
He explained how migrants received “a lottery ticket to travel to the richest sanctuary jurisdiction in the country”, while explaining that the summer island had many job offers and hotels to accommodate the immigrants.
“Now we see that’s just a sign of self-congratulatory virtue,” DeSantis said.
Despite the popularity of the Martha’s Vineyard move to Kansas, liberals criticized DeSantis for pulling off what they called a cruel coup that used human lives as pawns in a political game.
Among the critics was President Biden, who said DeSantis was “playing politics with human beings.”
Many have called the situation a humanitarian emergency, while Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker said Martha’s Vineyard – with a population of 15,000 – is “not equipped to provide sustainable housing” for migrants.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre also took aim at DeSantis at a press conference, urging other Republicans who disagree with his “plan” to “speak up.”
Migrants who were transferred from Martha’s Vineyard to Joint Base Cape Cod received a hot meal. Pictured: A mother carrying her children to be taken by bus to the base
The migrants are settling in momentarily after days of confusion that began when they were brought into a Florida airport for shipment to Massachusetts.
She said: “It’s a problem and we’ve been clear about it, it’s an inhumane problem, it’s heinous and we shouldn’t use people, migrants, who are fleeing communism as a political pawn. .”
The governor of Florida sent the group of 50 migrants to Martha’s Vineyard, where officials immediately deplored the situation, calling on the National Guard to move the group because the town would have no available shelter.
The migrants were evacuated from the island within 48 hours and transferred by ferry to a military base on Cape Cod.
A DeSantis spokesperson said in a statement that the trip was part of the state’s “resettlement program to transport illegal immigrants to sanctuary destinations.”
DeSantis had followed the example of his counterparts in Texas and Arizona, which transport dozens of migrants who entered the United States illegally to New York, Chicago and Washington, DC.
Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott sent two buses full of migrants to Harris’s gates on Thursday after the vice president claimed the border was “secure.”
“Vice President Harris says our border is ‘secure’ and denies crisis,” Abbott tweeted, claiming responsibility for the move. “We are sending migrants to his backyard to ask the Biden administration to do its job and secure the border.”