Abbott’s office provided the data on Wednesday in an email to The Texan.
The transportation is voluntary and the individuals must have federal documentation. Earlier this year, Abbott stated at a news conference in the Texas Capitol that the state “will transport as many as possible.”
In addition, the governor’s office indicated the state has sent 3,900 illegal immigrants back to ports of entry pursuant to Executive Order GA-41, issued in early July. Abbott’s order called illegal immigration an “invasion” and pointed to provisions in the Texas and federal constitutions that require the defense of the state.
However, he did not direct the state’s military or police to conduct their own deporations without federal involvement, instead directing them to transport illegal immigrants to the U.S. side of ports of entry.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection encountered illegal aliens about 128,000 times in Texas border patrol sectors in June, the latest month for which statistics have been published.
New York City Mayor Eric Adams reportedly called the bussing “mean and cruel” to the people being transported. Washington, D.C.’s mayor, Muriel Bowser, has also condemned Abbott’s decision and unsuccessfully sought federal aid to handle the individuals Texas has sent to the national capital.
NBC DFW reported in June that Texas is spending $1,400 per individual to transport them to Washington, D.C. The state spent a total of more than $1.6 million on the program in April and May.
Abbott has contended the onus is on President Biden to reduce the influx of illegal immigrants. The governor also pointed to New York City’s “right to housing” policy, which requires the government to provide free shelter for anyone who is “unhoused.”
“In addition to Washington, D.C., New York City is the ideal destination for these migrants, who can receive the abundance of city services and housing that Mayor Eric Adams has boasted about within the sanctuary city,” Abbott said in a news release last week. “I hope he follows through on his promise of welcoming all migrants with open arms so that our overrun and overwhelmed border towns can find relief.”
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters on Monday that Abbott is “using migrants as a political pawn.”
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Hayden Sparks is a senior reporter for The Texan and a lifelong resident of the Lone Star State. He has coached competitive speech and debate and has been involved in politics since a young age. One of Hayden's favorite quotes is by Sam Houston: "Texas has yet to learn submission to any oppression, come from what source it may."