Republicans uncover shocking cost of our open border policy

This week Republicans alerted the public and news media that nearly $35 million dollars is being spent to temporarily house asylum seekers while the pressing needs of Maine citizens go unmet.

This is Representative Tammy Schmersal-Burgess of Mexico with the weekly Republican address. 

$34.28 Million dollars has been spent on housing for an estimated 2,200 asylum seekers from just one program.

 In spite of the growing number of problems facing Maine, the Governor and legislative Democrats continue encouraging unvetted immigrants to come to Maine with no means of support or the ability to work.

This is consistent with the Governor’s stated goal of bringing in 75,000 “new Mainers” by 2029.

It is important to state clearly that Republicans are in favor of LEGAL IMMIGRATION.

We all personally know people that came here after spending years following the rules before becoming contributors to our communities and economy.

We have been asking for years; how many people have been coming to Maine; where are they going; how much does it cost, and what is the plan going forward?

We finally received information and

What we uncovered is SHOCKING.

The numbers we released to the public and press are only for one fund, the Emergency Housing Relief Fund.

That fund has spent:

• $35 million to house approximately 2,200 asylum seekers; 63% of the entire fund

• The Transitional housing piece spent $56,000 per unit

• $1.2 million dollars was spent for legal assistance for federal asylum claims

• $13.9 million dollars went to one hotel for only 80 families

• Money has been used to build new, rent-free luxury apartments in Brunswick

Those numbers are just the tip of the iceberg, especially with more migrants coming each day, and no more details.

The numbers we uncovered highlighted information on housing costs, not the other costs associated with bringing large numbers of migrants here.

Consider that Maine’s General Assistance has grown 330% from $13 million to $43 million in 2023.

This spending on migrants is horrible mismanagement of taxpayer dollars and an insult to long-time Mainers in need.

We know people that have been on housing wait lists for over 5 years.

Now newly arrived migrants are moved to the head of the line.

This is not right.

• The existing needs of elderly Mainers are painfully obvious as nursing homes continue to close. We have a shortage of long-term care facilities

• Our elderly people have nowhere to go.

• We have a massive mental health crisis with a shortage of beds.

• We have homeless camps in places you wouldn’t imagine.

• Migrants are at the front of the line over our veterans; people who voluntarily risks their lives for our country.  

We need to attract new workers to Maine, but not by putting them ahead of our seniors, our homeless, our veterans, and citizens struggling to survive today.

Republicans favor legal immigration that offers a way to employment.

The opportunity to work and contribute to Maine communities should drive people to come here, not generous welfare benefits

Democrats are following the same policies that have already proven to be unsustainable in California, Boston, New York, or any other place managed by Democrats.

Republicans are exposing this obscene diversion of taxpayer money away from pressing state needs in an effort to demand accountability.

This has been Representative Tammy Schmersal-Burgess with the Weekly Republican Radio Address.

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