U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz admits on Fox News that transporting migrants across state lines is illegal

Democratic lawmakers and civil-rights groups have accused Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis of human trafficking after he flew 50 migrants to Martha's Vineyard last week.

click to enlarge Republican Sen. Ted Cruz made the statement Friday during a Fox News appearance. - Wikimedia Commons / Gage Skidmore
Wikimedia Commons / Gage Skidmore
Republican Sen. Ted Cruz made the statement Friday during a Fox News appearance.

U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz admitted to Fox News anchor Sean Hannity that trafficking undocumented migrants across state lines is illegal during a Friday appearance on the conservative news channel.

The Texas Republican's comments came days after Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis took credit for flying 50 South American migrants from San Antonio to Martha's Vineyard, allegedly on the false promise that they would receive work after relocating.

"Let's say I went down to the border and I brought a big truck with me, and I picked up a bunch of illegal immigrants, and I started transporting them across the country," Hannity said to Cruz. "Would I or would I not likely be arrested for human trafficking, and would it be illegal to do that for me if I did that?"

Cruz, a Harvard Law school graduate, was clear in that doing so would illegal and that Hannity would likely end up in handcuffs.

"For you, a citizen, you could easily be arrested," Cruz said. "Although, to be honest, Joe Biden's Justice Department wouldn't arrest you."

After the statement, the hard-right senator became visibly uncomfortable, then accused President Joe Biden of being "the biggest human trafficker on the face of the planet." However, Cruz offered little evidence or context to back up that claim.

Democratic politicians including Massachusetts State Rep. Dylan Fernandez have accused DeSantis of human trafficking after he chartered two planes to transport migrants from San Antonio to the wealthy East Coast resort destination.

Fernandez, who represents Martha's Vineyard in the Massachusetts House, last week requested that the Justice Department open an investigation into DeSantis' move. The League of United Latin American Citizens also said it wants to pursue legal action against those who helped lure asylum seekers onto the flights.

Despite widespread criticism and calls for an investigation, DeSantis pledged that more flights are to come, promising to exhaust his Florida's $12 million program to transport migrants out of the state.

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Michael Karlis

Michael Karlis is a Staff Writer at the San Antonio Current. He is a graduate of American University in Washington, D.C., whose work has been featured in Salon, Alternet, Creative Loafing Tampa Bay, Orlando Weekly, NewsBreak, 420 Magazine and Mexico Travel Today. He reports primarily on breaking news, politics...

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