NEW YORK CITY (AP) — New York City’s attempt to halt the transportation of migrants into the city through a lawsuit against 17 bus companies may encounter legal obstacles, despite the excitement shown by some media outlets. The city is seeking $708 million in damages, accusing the bus companies of bringing over 33,600 migrants from Texas to Gotham in violation of Section 149 of the New York Social Services Law.
According to the law, any person who brings a needy person from out of state into New York for the purpose of making them a public charge is obligated to either take them out of state or support them at their own expense. However, the lawsuit is criticized for missing the mark legally, particularly as migrants have been allowed to enter the country by the U.S. government and have de facto parole without travel restrictions.
Matt O’Brien, the director of investigations for the Immigration Reform Law Institute, argued that the bus companies are not engaged in alien smuggling or harboring, but rather simply selling tickets to carry passengers, which is not a violation of any laws. It is also argued that denying transport to migrants on the basis of their alienage would violate their constitutional right to freedom of movement and interfere with interstate commerce, citing the Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution.
The New York Post editorialized that if Mayor Eric Adams wants to file lawsuits over the migrant crisis in the city, he should consider suing the federal government instead. The paper also suggested that Adams should reconsider the city’s sanctuary policies and revise the legal settlement that guarantees shelter to anyone who arrives in the five boroughs.
The courtroom battle presents an opportunity for Adams to take on the same argument as Texas Governor Greg Abbott, who claims that the Biden administration has failed to enforce immigration laws and maintain border integrity. The outcome of the lawsuit will likely determine the path forward.
In summary, New York City’s lawsuit against the bus companies transporting migrants into the city faces legal hurdles and criticism. The lawsuit, seeking $708 million in damages, accuses the bus companies of violating state law. However, critics argue that the migrants have been granted de facto parole and have a constitutional right to freedom of movement. The New York Post suggests that the city should sue the federal government and reconsider its sanctuary policies. The legal battle is expected to shed light on the federal government’s responsibility and enforcement of immigration laws.