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Texas Officials Say They’re Not Shipping Migrants to Fresno

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Official bring blankets into St. Anthony's Croatian Catholic Church in Los Angeles in June 2023 after 42 migrants from Texas were bused to Union Station from Texas. (AP File)
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A Texas government official rebutted rumors Thursday that Texas Gov. Greg Abbott was set to ship busloads of asylum-seeking migrants to Fresno.

Rumors about Fresno receiving large numbers of immigrants who first crossed the U.S. border in Texas began circulating in City Hall on Thursday.

However, Seth W. Christensen, a spokesman for the Texas Division of Emergency Preparedness, told GV Wire’s David Taub that “we do not have a bus currently en route to Fresno.”

Christensen added that the “current destinations” for migrants that have “overwhelmed Texas border communities” are Los Angeles, Denver, Chicago, New York City, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.

He also noted that the migrants are being sent to “self-proclaimed sanctuary cities.”

More Than 90,000 Migrants Bused Out of Texas

Abbott’s controversial decision to bus migrants out of Texas has become a hot-button issue and a major debate topic in the 2024 presidential race. The policy has won him many fans in Republican circles and vocal critics among Democrats.

Meanwhile, mayors in the targeted cities must scramble to provide the migrants with clothing, food, and shelter. And, they’re looking to the Biden administration for financial help.

“Our cities are working shoulder-to-shoulder to support newcomers,” Denver Mayor Mike Johnston said in an online statement. “But it’s time for the federal government to increase work authorization, create a coordinated entry strategy, and provide more federal dollars to ensure cities can manage this crisis and help newcomers thrive.”

In late December, CNN — citing Texas records — reported that “the Lone Star state has bused over 90,000 migrants to ‘sanctuary cities’ run by Democrats … since April 2022.”

These are the specific numbers published by Texas officials through Dec. 29, 2023:

  • Over 12,500 migrants to Washington, D.C. since April 2022
  • Over 33,600 migrants to New York City since August 2022
  • Over 28,000 migrants to Chicago since August 2022
  • Over 3,400 migrants to Philadelphia since November 2022
  • Over 13,800 migrants to Denver since May 18
  • Over 1,300 migrants to Los Angeles since June 14

CNN additionally reported that “the mayors of New York, Chicago, and Denver are trying to slow the surge by requiring the bus operators to coordinate arrivals under the threat of impound, fines, and even jail time.”

Bill McEwen is news director and columnist for GV Wire. He joined GV Wire in August 2017 after 37 years at The Fresno Bee. With The Bee, he served as Opinion Editor, City Hall reporter, Metro columnist, sports columnist and sports editor through the years. His work has been frequently honored by the California Newspapers Publishers Association, including authoring first-place editorials in 2015 and 2016. Bill and his wife, Karen, are proud parents of two adult sons, and they have two grandsons. You can contact Bill at 559-492-4031 or at Send an Email