TAMPA, Fla. (WFLA) — Gov. Ron DeSantis spoke alongside several state and local officials at a roundtable event in Arizona Wednesday to speak about illegal immigration.
The governor was joined by Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd, Attorney General Ashley Moody, Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey, and Cochise County Sheriff Mark Dannels, of Arizona.
“This country is falling on its face with respect to ensuring the sovereignty to our country,” DeSantis began. “We’ve been hearing about this problem for many, many decades, and yet, it’s probably as bad as it’s ever been right now.”
The governor, and now Republican presidential candidate, said illegal immigration is not just a problem isolated to border communities, “This is affecting communities all throughout the United States of America,” he said.
“We have the will in states like Florida, you have the will in Cochise County,” DeSantis added. “You may not have the will in Washington, D.C. so we have to work together to try to overcome that.”
The governor pointed to the growing threat of violent crime and the rise in fentanyl-related deaths stemming from drugs smuggled across the nation’s borders.
“I’m a big believer in constructing a border wall because you’re never going to have enough people to cover the entire border,” DeSantis said.
Headlines regarding the Florida governor most recently connected his administration to a pair of flights that transported over 30 migrants from Texas to Sacramento, California.
On Tuesday, the Florida Department of Emergency Management broke its silence, confirming to News Channel 8’s Libbey Dean that the state of Florida was, in fact, responsible for transporting the migrants.
Watch the roundtable event in the player above. This is a developing story. Stay up to date on the latest from News Channel 8 on-air and on the go with the free WFLA News Channel 8 mobile app.