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Dems' Open Border Trickery -- Gaming the Census

Betsy McCaughey on

New York is Migrant Central -- the No. 1 destination in the country for illegal border crossers -- and it's no accident. New York's Democratic politicians benefit from the deluge. The more migrants come here, the more congressional seats and clout in the electoral college New York is able to maintain.

Elon Musk spelled it out on X on Feb. 3: "Most people in America don't know that the census is based on a simple headcount of people (including illegals) not just citizens. This shifts political power and money to states and Congressional districts with the highest number of illegals."

The busloads coming in from the southern border offset the moving vans exiting the city carrying New Yorkers in search of better places to live. Migrants are actually helping protect Democratic members of Congress from losing their districts as the city's population shrinks.

New York City lost 400,000 residents over the last three years. They're being gradually replaced, explains City Comptroller Brad Lander, by a wave of migrants who are dependent on the city for shelter, food, health care and everything else. "I actually don't consider it a crisis," says Lander. "To me this is the next wave of people becoming New Yorkers."

Lander apparently is unbothered taxpayers are being replaced by people who consume services instead of paying for them. But it's not sustainable. Too much spending is one of the reasons New York City's financial condition worsened over the past year, earning it an "F" grade in a new fiscal watchdog report by Truth in Accounting. NYC ranked worst of 75 municipalities.

Undaunted by this fiscal decline, New York pols offer more benefits to incentivize migrants to come. In this year's state budget, Gov. Kathy Hochul added cash welfare for asylum seekers.

Mayor Eric Adams recently announced debit cards loaded with up to $1,000 a month. The administration claims the cards will enable newcomers to buy culturally appropriate foods to replace the prepared meals they're already handed free of charge. Truth is they can use the cards to buy anything they want or to take out cash at an ATM.

Topping it off, far-left politicians in the City Council -- who now have the clout to override the mayor -- are pushing to eliminate Adams' 60-day limit on shelter stays. State Sen. Brad Hoylman-Sigal is doing the same in Albany, calling time limits "arbitrary and inhumane."

That's insane. No other city even guarantees shelter. How can New York guarantee it indefinitely to everyone from around the globe?

Department of Social Services Commissioner Molly Wasow-Park told a forum on Jan. 31 to plan on "a probably non-trivial number of undocumented immigrants who are going to need long term assistance from the city."

 

What could possible explain burdening the city like this? Partly, it's the Democratic Party's confiscatory ideology: squeeze taxpayers to give as much as possible to the needy. But there's raw political self-interest at work, too.

Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-N.Y.) told a hearing on Haitian migrants in 2021 that she wants them so she can hold on to her seat. "I need more people in my district just for redistricting purposes."

In July 2020, President Donald Trump ordered the census to subtract the number of undocumented immigrants from the headcount. He said, "States adopting policies that encourage illegal aliens ... should not be rewarded with greater representation in the House of Representatives."

New York's Attorney General Letitia James sued. The case went to the Supreme Court, but the justices ducked it, leaving the decision to the future.

Now, Sen. Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.) and others have introduced legislation to exclude illegal immigrants from apportionment. The bill won't pass in the Democrat-controlled Senate, but Hagerty got to the point: "While people continue to flee Democrat-run cities, desperate Democrats are back-filling the mass exodus with illegal immigrants so that they do not lose their seats in Congress or their electoral votes for the presidency."

That's the cynical reality happening here in New York, as well as in Chicago and Los Angeles. As more and more migrants arrive, these cities spiral downward. Migrant gangs raid stores and terrorize pedestrians, shelters overflow, schools struggle to accommodate migrant children, and city services are cut to pay for it all -- your quality of life be damned.

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Betsy McCaughey is a former lieutenant governor of New York and chairman of the Committee to Reduce Infection Deaths. Follow her on Twitter @Betsy_McCaughey. To find out more about Betsy McCaughey and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.

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