Mayor Muriel Bowser said the influx had caused a ‘humanitarian crisis.’
But the issue quickly spiralled into a political row as Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s office said the nation’s capital was now experiencing the sort of problems that Texans saw every day.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said officials talking with Bowser about the request.
‘We have been in regular touch with Mayor Bowser and her team,’ she said at her daily briefing.
‘And I said this before … about Republicans using migrants as a political tool, and that is shameful and that is just wrong.
‘There is a process in place for managing migrants at the border. This is not it.’
She said migrants should be expelled under Title 42, or transferred into custody, or placed in the care of local organizations for proper processing.
‘So what Republicans are doing, the way that they’re meddling in the process and using migrants as a political pawn, is just wrong,’ she added.
Bowser follows New York City Mayor Eric Adams in highlighting migrants being sent to their cities, and blaming Arizona and Texas for the influx.
She said some 4000 people had arrived in the city after crossing the border illegally, creating a ‘tipping point.’
But Texas hit back.
‘Washington D.C. finally understands what Texans have been dealing with every single day, as our communities are overrun and overwhelmed by thousands of illegal immigrants thanks to President Biden’s open border policies,’ Abbott’s office said in a statement.
“If the mayor wants a solution to this crisis, she should call on President Biden to take immediate action to secure the border — something he has failed to do. The true ongoing humanitarian crisis is along our southern border.’
The war of words follows Bowser’s request for the National Guard.
‘The pace of arriving buses and the volume of arrivals have reached tipping points,’ Bowser wrote in a letter to the Biden administration. ‘Our collective response and service efforts have now become overwhelmed.’
‘Tragically, many families arrive in Washington, DC with nowhere to go, or they remain in limbo seeking onward destinations across the United States,’ she added.
The plea for assistance comes after a new NBC News report shows that, according to internal documents, 73 migrants were found living in houses in Northwest D.C. that are operated by human smugglers.
Bowser said that the migrant crisis landing on the front door of the nation’s capital has reached a ‘tipping point’ with more than 4,000 people arriving so far after crossing the border illegally from Mexico.
She also dubbed it a ‘humanitarian crisis’ requiring the involvement of the National Guard and requested that the D.C. Armory bemused as a processing center, the Metro area’s NBC affiliate reported.
‘DC Mayor—rightly—calls massive influx of illegal aliens a ‘humanitarian crisis,’ Texas Senator Ted Cruz tweeted.
‘She says w/ 4000 arriving in DC, we’re ‘at a tipping point,’ he continued. ‘If 4000 is a tipping point, what the hell do you call the THREE & A HALF MILLION illegal immigrants who’ve crossed our southern border??’
The goal of Texas Governor Greg Abbott and Arizona Governor Doug Ducey, both Republicans, bussing migrants to D.C. was to show national leaders the crisis that border states are facing as they feel largely ignored by the administration when it comes to the record-setting number of crossings.
The D.C. Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency along with Bowser sent letters to the Office of the Secretary of Defense on July 19 – and then followed up with letters to President Biden on July 22.
Bowser and the D.C. agency have not yet received responses, according to NBC.
Without its own National Guard presence, D.C. will have to rely on other states to offer up members of their own domestic service to help out.
Abbott started shipping migrants from his state to D.C. in mid-April – and Ducey followed suit a month later.
Since the start of the initiative, more than 125 buses have transported 4,8000 migrants from Tex border communities the 2,000 miles to D.C. Another 27 buses carrying more than 1,000 passengers from Arizona have arrived in the nation’s capital.
Meanwhile, 60 adult and 13 children migrants were found by Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations team.
The operation found six residential homes that DHS HSI believe is operated by human smugglers.
Along with the migrants, according to the documents reviewed by NBC, the agents also found $95,000 in cash and a small amount of cocaine.
Northwest D.C., where the migrants were found, includes some of D.C.’s most affluent neighborhoods, including Georgetown and Kalorama. In 2017, the Obamas purchased a home in Kalorama for $8.1 million.
No addresses or neighborhoods were mentioned in documents on where the migrants were found or how many were living in a single house.