Mayor Adams predicted Wednesday night that the influx of more than 110,000 migrants will “destroy” New York City and continued his demands for the federal government to step up efforts to address what he called a “national crisis.”
Adams’ comments represent perhaps his starkest rhetoric yet on the situation, which began to take shape in the spring of 2022 when asylum seekers started flooding into the city after crossing into American border states — with some coming on buses sent by Texas Gov. Greg Abbott.
“I don’t see an ending to this. This issue will destroy New York City. Destroy New York City. We’re getting 10,000 migrants a month,” he said at a town hall-style meeting on the Upper West Side. “All of us are going to be impacted by this. I said it last year when we had 15,000, and I’m telling you now with 110,000 — the city we knew, we’re about to lose.”
Adams’ remarks came just hours after his administration announced the city would remove hundreds of single adult migrants from hotels and move them to a mega shelter on Randalls Island to make room families with children amid a shortage of shelter space.
Advocates to the left of the mayor have largely supported his calls on the feds and state government to do more, but have also chided him for what they view as his sometimes inflammatory rhetoric surrounding the issue and his failure to effectively utilize the tools already at his disposal.
Jews for Racial & Economic Justice chided Adams, a more moderate Democrat, for his remarks Thursday and suggested that instead of pursuing austerity measures, he should invest more wisely in the city’s social safety net.
“What threatens to destroy New York City are billionaires trying to turn our city into a playground for the wealthy few, and the politicians who dine with them and choose to defund social services while criminalizing poverty and spreading fear & division,” the group said in a statement posted on social media.
Republicans largely embraced Adams’ dire message, though.
Rep. Nick LaLota (R-Long Island) praised him for “admitting” the city’s predicament.
“The first step towards solving a problem is admitting you have one,” said the Suffolk County Republican. “Credit to Mayor Adams for being truthful in this clip about the scope of NYC’s migrant crisis. Now, he must repeal NYC’s sanctuary policies.”
City Councilman Joe Borelli, a Staten Island Republican, also echoed the sentiment.
“NYC is doomed. The migrant crisis is sinking us. People need to protest the feds,” he said, paraphrasing Adams’ remarks. “Turn the buses around.”
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