New York Gov. Kathy Hochul seemingly changed her tune on the migrant crisis Thursday, remarking during a CNN appearance, “If you’re going to leave your country, go somewhere else.”
“We have to let the word out that when you come to New York you’re not gonna have more hotel rooms,” Hochul said. “We don’t have capacity, so we have to also message properly.”
“The smarter thing is to apply for asylum before you leave your country,” the governor added.
The notable shift comes after the Democrat previously touted New York’s sanctuary status.
New York Republicans have long demanded Hochul rescind the state’s sanctuary designation.
“New York City’s leaders chose to be a sanctuary city, putting out a welcome mat for every migrant who arrives in the country. They chose virtue signaling over good government policy, and so must bear the consequences,” a group of eight state senators told Hochul in a Sept. 1 letter. “That in no way affords you or Mayor Adams the luxury of transferring the impacts of your failed policies onto our suburban communities.”
Hochul’s office did not immediately return a request for comment Thursday.
During her appearance on CNN, Hochul said she would support New York’s “right to shelter” law being recalled or rescinded amid the migrant crisis because it was originally intended to address homeless men on the streets experiencing AIDS, and then it was expanded to apply to families.
The governor said it was never meant to ensure “an unlimited, universal right or obligation on the city to have to house literally the entire world.”
Hochul met with President Biden during his stop in New York City to speak before the United Nations General Assembly this week. Afterward, the Biden administration announced it would approve work authorization and deportation delays for approximately 470,000 Venezuelans already in the U.S.
New York City officials have said approximately 116,000 migrants have arrived from the border so far, with more from the recent waves being from African nations and even Russia.
Hochul said during her CNN appearance she had to be certain not to support a policy that can draw more people because places like New York “really are at capacity.”
“We have large hearts. You want to be generous and supportive to people who are experiencing humanitarian crisis, but there is a limit to what we can do,” the governor said.
Mayor Eric Adams, who did not meet with Biden during his New York City stop amid fractured relations between the two Democrats regarding the handling of migrant crisis, did thank the president for fast-tracking work authorization for Venezuelans.
The Department of Homeland Security said the temporary protected status extended to Venezuelans for 18 months would not apply to those who arrived in the United States after July 31, 2023.
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