New Yorkers are relieved that Gov. Kathy Hochul (D) has her priorities in order. In her annual State of the State address, Hochul quoted pop star Taylor Swift but did not mention the immigration crisis in the state’s largest city.
“Quoting the philosopher Taylor Swift,” she said, “she reminds us that everybody here was somebody else before.”
On the very same day that Hochul gave her speech, students at New York City’s James Madison High School were displaced from their school building by 2,000 illegal immigrants who were given shelter in the auditorium and gymnasium.
Hochul later appeared to double down on her speech, posting on X (formerly known as Twitter) generic messages about diversity.
New York’s strength is forged from the diversity and industry of our people. We succeed because of our contrasts and our amazing differences. And I know we are more powerful together than on our own.
This is our New York, this is our future, and I know that our future is bright. pic.twitter.com/laSfdGn3mD
— Governor Kathy Hochul (@GovKathyHochul) January 10, 2024
The Governor mentioned the word “migrants” one time, classifying their care as a “fiscal issue”: “I’ll tackle some of the toughest fiscal issues, like caring for migrants and the structural deficit.”
Her State of the State document does provide some hints at the immigration issue and how she would utilize state resources toward it:
“Governor Hochul is launching a new, multi-pronged effort to ensure New York’s immigrant communities have access to the tools and resources to realize their full entrepreneurial and economic potential.”
Rep. Claudia Tenney (R-NY) reacting to the speech on X said: “Hochul’s failure to take this crisis seriously will only prolong the detrimental effects it will have on our state!”
Nearly 100,000 migrants entered New York in 2023.
Yet, Governor Hochul merely mentioned the word “migrant” once during her State of the State Address yesterday.
Hochul's failure to take this crisis seriously will only prolong the detrimental effects it will have on our state!
— Rep. Claudia Tenney (@RepTenney) January 10, 2024
Others criticized the speech as being directed to suburban parts of the state, which do not face the same immigration crisis as New York City.
In 2023 alone 100,000 Illegal immigrants entered New York City. Shelters have been overwhelmed, and the city has housed migrants in such places as hotels, schools, and outdoor tents at an airfield. The notion of using private homes has been suggested by Mayor Eric Adams (D).
Mayor Adams claims to have reached out to the Biden administration to discuss the crisis but was rebuffed.
Governor Kathy Hochul was Lieutenant Governor of New York and assumed the Governor’s role in 2021 when her predecessor Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) resigned amid accusations of inappropriate behavior with multiple women. In 2023 Hochul won a full term in a statewide election.