A Bay Area shuttle company said it was not involved in Republican governors’ efforts to ferry migrants across the United States, even though buses with its distinct rainbow pattern on the side and his name – Marin Airporter – was plastered in media coverage.
The San Rafael-based company operates eight routes in Marin County and offers some of its buses for hire, but the company said it was caught off guard when a bus with its logo was seen dropping off migrants from Texas at New York last week.
GOP governors Greg Abbott of Texas and Ron DeSantis of Florida have recently made a habit of ferrying newly arrived immigrants to liberal cities and states, and sometimes directly to the homes of political opponents in what critics have said. called a political coup at the expense of a vulnerable group of people. The immigrants have arrived in New York, Washington, DC, Chicago, Martha’s Vineyard, and at one point on the doorstep of Vice President Kamala Harris’ house.
Some immigrants said they did not know where they were being sent or why.
A Marin Airporter executive told The Times the company was ‘horrified’ to be linked to the practice of moving migrants across the country, and she was shocked to learn that buses sold in May were being used to carry some people. .
“Marin Airporter is deeply distressed that our name is linked to the exploitation of vulnerable human beings,” said David Hughes, vice president of the company. “The buses seen in national media bringing migrants to New York from Texas do not belong to the Marin Airporter.”
Hughes said two buses were sold to a Houston-based company four months ago, and for some reason the Texas-based company did not remove the logo from the buses.
It’s standard practice for new bus owners to repaint vehicle logos and names before using them, Hughes said. Before handing over the buses, he said, Marin Airporter made sure to also remove his Department of Transportation number from the side of the buses.
Since discovering the buses were being used to move immigrants across the country, Hughes said Marin Airporter has been in contact with the Texas company several times and repeatedly asked them to remove the logo from the buses. .
The company, which Hughes declined to name, has been “unresponsive”.
“We would never be part of something like this”, Marin Airporter tweeted.
It’s unclear why the company refused to repaint the buses, Hughes said. Marine Airporter has done business with the company in the past, selling two more buses last year. These buses have been repainted without problems.
In a statement, Abbott’s office said Texas had transported more than 7,900 immigrants to DC since April, more than 2,200 to New York and more than 300 to Chicago.
In California, eight immigrants from Venezuela seeking asylum landed in Sacramento after being airlifted from Texas last week. The men told an advocacy group that none of them intended to travel to Sacramento, but were issued documents that now require them to register with immigration officials.