Texas Organizing Project PAC & Florida Rising Condemn Abbott & DeSantis’ Blatant Racism & Exploitation of Migrants

Using Human Beings As Political Props, TX & FL Governors Show How Low They’ll Go to Score Right-Wing Political Points

Today, Texas Organizing Project (TOP) PAC and Florida Rising are jointly condemning the disgusting action taken by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis’ to cruelly fly migrants to Martha’s Vineyard. DeSantis’ follows Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s lead of busing migrants to Washington D.C. earlier this year. By lying and deceiving vulnerable individuals and asylum-seekers who have the right to be in this country, both men have confirmed how shameless their radical, dehumanizing politics are when it comes to caring about the wellbeing of people in need of humanitarian aid. Not only are their actions inhumane, they are also potentially illegal, and the Bexar County Sheriff has opened a criminal investigation into the move to trick migrants into flying to Massachusetts.

TOP and Florida Rising are committed to removing these shameless Republicans from office in November, and we are engaging hundreds of thousands of voters in Florida and in Texas to reach that goal. These inhumane acts also echo back to “Reverse Freedom Rides,” during the 1960s when Southern segregationists sent Black Americans to northern states in an attempt engineered to expose liberals’ alleged hypocrisy. The Reverse Freedom Rides have largely been left out of our country’s historical narrative. Many of these individuals currently affected by these horrifying PR stunts, like the Black families 60 years ago, have traveled on the false pretenses of receiving jobs and housing. 

TOP Co-Executive Director Michelle Tremillo, released the following statement: “Abbott’s plot to deceitfully transport migrants reveals what TOP members have known for some time—our GOP governor couldn’t care less about the rights, health, and wellbeing of migrants and their families. Instead of working toward real policy solutions on behalf of Texans and migrants, Republicans would rather exploit and play politics with real human lives. Now, more than ever, the need for change and leadership in Texas, as in Florida, is clear, and we at TOP are fighting to engage Black and Latino communities who will help us build a better state.

Florida Rising’s Executive Director Andrea Mercado echoed the outrage: “Governors DeSantis and Abbott are on full display of their endless hypocrisy but, mostly, cruelty. In an electoral cycle, they take advantage of the pain of those who fled authoritarian regimes, adding insult to injury as an evil electoral tactic. These Republican leaders are using asylum seekers to play an outrageous political game. Their lack of compassion is abysmal, but even worse, their disrespect, time and again, for the Hispanic community once again affirms that racism and xenophobia are the GOP’s marching orders. But our communities’ marching orders are clear– voting out DeSantis and Abbott on November 8th.” 


Texas Organizing Project (TOP) PAC runs the largest, independent get-out-the-vote political field programs in Texas, focusing on expanding the electorate of color, with an emphasis on turning out Black and Latino voters. To date, TOP PAC has mobilized hundreds of thousands of voters across the state with the aim of building a reflective democracy–one that looks like us and shares our values. For more information, visit toppac.org.

Florida Rising (FR) is an independent political organization working to increase the voting and political power of historically marginalized and excluded constituencies toward an inclusive, equitable, and just Florida. For more information, visit floridarising.org.

This joint press statement was sent out September 21, 2022.