Tuesday, October 4, 2022

Florida Democrat sues DeSantis for flying migrants to Martha’s Vineyard: ‘He cannot adjust to the legislation’

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A Florida state lawmaker is suing Gov. Ron DeSantis and different state officers for orchestrating the transportation of migrants from Texas to Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts.

State Sen. Jason Pizzo, a Democrat who represents the Miami-Dade space, claims in a brand new lawsuit that relocating migrants from one other state utilizing Florida funds is an illegitimate use of these funds and violates Florida legal guidelines. The lawsuit additionally requests a choose to cease such relocations.

“This is very clear and straightforward,” Pizzo stated throughout an interview, the Miami Herald reported. “The governor had legislators carry and pass bills that were designed to suit his agenda and that he subsequently signed into law. And even with that completely privileged position, he still can’t comply with the law. He set the rules for the game and then he can’t follow them.”

Immigrants collect with their belongings outdoors St. Andrews Episcopal Church, Wednesday Sept. 14, 2022, in Edgartown, Mass., on Martha’s Vineyard.
(Ray Ewing/Vineyard Gazette by way of AP))

The Florida legislature beforehand authorized $12 million within the state’s transportation funds to relocating migrants who had entered Florida illegally. However, within the lawsuit, Pizzo, an lawyer, argues DeSantis isn’t utilizing these funds within the method they have been appropriated as a result of he moved migrants who are usually not “unauthorized aliens” and who weren’t initially in Florida.


The two planes of 48 Venezuelan migrants have been flown from San Antonio to the ritzy Massachusetts island and solely briefly landed in Florida.

Taryn Fenske, DeSantis’ communications director, dismissed the brand new 15-page lawsuit and stated Pizzo was merely searching for his “15 minutes of fame.”

“Senator Pizzo never misses an opportunity for his 15 minutes of fame and is challenging an action on an appropriation he voted for,” Fenske advised the outlet.

The lawsuit additionally names Florida Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis, the Florida Department of Transportation and Jared Perdue, the division’s secretary.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis responded Tuesday to critics of him flying migrants to Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts.

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis responded Tuesday to critics of him flying migrants to Martha’s Vineyard in Massachusetts.

In an announcement to the paper, Patronis famous Pizzo voted to go the preliminary $12 million appropriation invoice and stated DeSantis’ workplace was working in compliance with it.

Devin Galletta, communications director for the Florida Department of Financial Services, echoed this assertion and in addition stated his workplace was exploring choices for a countersuit.


“Senator Pizzo, along with Minority Leader Lauren Book, voted for the $12 million appropriation to relocate migrants,” Galletta wrote. “Now that the law that they voted for is being implemented, and shedding light on the border crisis, Pizzo and Book have gone to their same old handbook, and hired a Democratic operative attorney to go after the executive branch for following the law. We are in receipt of the filing and we are currently exploring options for sanction and/or countersuit measures.”

Senator Jason Pizzo at a campaign event.

Senator Jason Pizzo at a marketing campaign occasion.
(Senator Jason Pizzo/Facebook)

The lawsuit comes after Lawyers for Civil Rights filed a category motion lawsuit on behalf of the unlawful immigrants flown to Martha’s Vineyard.

The lawsuit alleges that DeSantis “designed and executed a premeditated, fraudulent, and illegal scheme centered on exploiting this vulnerability for the sole purpose of advancing their own personal, financial and political interests.”

Gov. DeSantis’ spokesperson Taryn Fenske described the category motion lawsuit as “political theater.”

“If these activists spent even a fraction of this time and effort at the border, perhaps some accountability would be brought to the Biden Administration’s reckless border policies that entice illegal immigrants to make dangerous and often lethal journeys through Central America and put their lives in the hands of cartels and Coyotes,” Fenske stated.


She added: “The immigrants were homeless, hungry, and abandoned – and these activists didn’t care about them then. Florida’s program gave them a fresh start in a sanctuary state and these individuals opted to take advantage of chartered flights to Massachusetts.”

Some Democratic officers have additionally urged the federal authorities to research the transportation.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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