State senator: Pritzker ‘gaslighting’ Illinoisans he says engage in migrant ‘hysteria


(The Center Square) – While Gov. J.B. Pritzker contends southern states are creating chaos by sending non-citizen migrants to Illinois, a Republican state senator says Pritzker is “gaslighting” taxpayers.

Pritzker was asked Monday about the ongoing migrant crisis. He said the problem is leaders in Texas sending migrants to the state unannounced.

“Why do they do that? Because they want to cause chaos,” Pritzker said at an unrelated news conference. “We have managed to reign it in so that it’s not chaos.”

State Sen. Jason Plummer, R-Edwardsville, responded Wednesday, saying the state’s policies of not enforcing federal immigration law, offering taxpayer subsidized “Cadillac” health care and other services make Illinois the largest magnet for non-citizen migrants in the country.

“Why are they in places like this? Because we’ve invited them,” Plummer told The Center Square. “To pretend that there’s any rhyme or reason or structure or organization is the governor just once again gaslighting the people of Illinois.”

Plummer said some estimates are taxpayers are on the hook for upwards of $2 billion in costs for migrant services. He also raised concerns about the humanitarian impact from people being trafficked, raped and abused and the continued flood of fentanyl into the country.

Pritzker said there’s “hysteria” on social media and that moving non-citizens from Chicago to other parts of the state “isn’t happening, hasn’t happened and is not going to happen.”

“Our goal here is to help people get to their hearings, to get determined whether they actually can have legal asylum and stay in the United States or be deported by that hearing.”

Such hearings could be scheduled up to seven years in the future.

Plummer said Illinois’ policies are not always attracting people to Illinois “to do good.”

“Now we see gangs from Venezuela and these other places that are organized criminal groups that are taking advantage of this governor’s soft on crime policies to victimize Illinoisans,” Plummer said.

The human tragedy stemming from the “political calculation” of Democrats across the country, Plummer said, is “evil and disgusting” and there needs to be leadership to better address the issue.

“In addition to not being able to afford it, we’re raising taxes on Illinoisans and we’re taking services away from Illinoisans to support folks that this governor invited to this state,” Plummer said.

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