It is no wonder that citizens throw their hands up in disgust with their so-called leaders in the GOP.
I can’t take the latest from the Tennessee Republicans seriously because for years they have been making the right noises about states rights when it comes to Washington dumping refugees and illegal aliens on the backs of their taxpayers, but somehow never make any headway. Why is that?
It is impossible for me to go back over the leadership Tennessee did display for a brief period when the legislature filed a Tenth Amendment case against the federal government, but then after backing away from it, watched their Republican Governor, Bill Lee, stick his finger in Trump’s eye when Trump attempted to give the states a modicum of say in the distribution of refugees.
For ambitious readers, see my ‘Tennessee’ archives.
Last week we reported on the news from Chattanooga:
The story caused a ripple of angry political posturing that has resulted in this—a study committee has been formed! Whoop-de-do!
From The Tennessean:
Tennessee legislature forms GOP committee to take on unaccompanied minors, refugee resettlement
As recent news stories continue to highlight the arrival of unaccompanied migrant youth in Tennessee — a practice that has gone on since before President Joe Biden took office — top Republicans in the state are seizing on the issue to call for more transparency from the federal government.
On Friday, the Republican speakers of the state House and Senate announced they were forming a legislative study committee to determine how many migrant children are being permanently relocated to the state.
Apparently conflating the recent influx of migrants with refugees, a separate category of individuals Tennessee has for years received following a vetting process, the legislature has formed a “Joint Study Committee on Refugee Issues.” [The UACs are NOT refugees. They are illegal aliens!–ed]
“When the federal government abdicates its responsibility to control our borders, states must step in,” Lt. Gov. Randy McNally said in a statement.
“With this study committee, we affirm that there is a clear and compelling state interest in a sane immigration policy.”
[That is really some tough talk wouldn’t you say! Do you feel better now?—ed]
It’s unclear when the committee will begin meeting or whether legislators intend to take any binding action during a special session or during the next legislative session in January.
Gov. Bill Lee’s announcement in December 2019 that Tennessee would continue accepting refugees, despite former President Donald Trump saying states would not have to do so, created tension with some Republican members of the legislature.
WCRB-TV in Chattanooga reported earlier this month that a group of migrant youth flew into Wilson Air Center in the early hours of May 14 before boarding buses to various Southeastern cities.
After outrage from Republican leaders about the news, The Times Free Press reported this week that the Lee administration had approved a residential child care license in May 2020 for an organization contracting with the federal government to house unaccompanied minors in Chattanooga.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Refugee Resettlement, 717 unaccompanied children were brought to Tennessee between Oct. 1 and March 21, a period that spans both Biden and Trump’s time in office. In Nashville, that number was 290.
The office did not provide to The Tennessean information on how many unaccompanied minors were brought to the state since March 21, nor did it answer questions about reports of unaccompanied minors flying into Chattanooga.
There is a lot more, click here.
See also Tennessee’s US lawmakers “fuming,” here.
As for the transparency issue, I have been reporting for years about the UAC (Unaccompanied Alien Children, a term the Biden team has dropped) data housed at the Office of Refugee Resettlement for all to see.
Demanding transparency (while fuming!) is a wonderful way for politicians to make their constituents think they are doing something without really doing anything!
The Tennessean might want to have another look today because the latest data has been posted. Tennessee is now up to 1,111 from 717.
Just a reminder to one and all, as much as it pains me to say it, Biden is no where near Trump’s levels of UACs sent out to states. See the data for yourself, here. Tennessee received over 2,000 in Trump’s worst year.
Top County data is here. Again, these are just sponsored UACs. The numbers do not reflect all of those still in custody.
And, if you are keeping track, here are the top ten states welcoming the Unaccompanied Alien Children, who will be ‘sponsored’ until they are 18 at which time they disappear into the woodwork of Anytown, USA, never to be heard from again unless and until they commit a crime.
New York (2323)
New Jersey (1470)
North Carolina (1066)