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Martha’s Vineyard local: Obamas should house migrants

A longtime Martha’s Vineyard resident says she supports Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ move to relocate migrants to the vacation island as a way of highlighting the border crisis — and says the Obamas should open their $12 million home to the newcomers.

The idyllic enclave was plunged into chaos and the local tourist board declared a “humanitarian crisis’’ Thursday after just 50 Venezuelan migrants landed there.

Jane Chittick, a former town official-turned-crime novelist, has lived in Martha’s Vineyard for 42 years but now spends part of the year in Florida.

Speaking to The Post on Friday, Chittick said: “I don’t think people like the Obamas with huge estates who live here in the summer will care (about the migrants).

“They have all these signs: ‘Private Property,’ ‘No Trespassing,’ ‘Do Not Come,’ ‘Police Are Patrolling.’ They’re not going to be on the streets in town or the church where a lot of the migrants were put last night.”

Long-time Martha's Vineyard resident Jane Chittick and her dog, Gracie.
Longtime Martha’s Vineyard resident Jane Chittick and her dog, Gracie.
Courtesy Jane Chittick
A group of 53 migrants arrived by two charted planes in Martha's Vineyard.
A group of 53 migrants arrived by two charted planes in Martha’s Vineyard on Thursday, sparking chaos.
Office of Gov DeSantis
The migrants were taken to a local church and offered food, medical care and other services.
The migrants were taken to a local church and offered food, medical care and other services.
via REUTERS

Former President Barack Obama owns a $12 million estate on the island, where he famously threw a massive party celebrating his 60th birthday amid the coronavirus pandemic in August 2021, attended by hundreds of his celebrity friends.

“I would love to see the Obamas open up their huge property and erect tents and look after all these people while they’re being processed,” Chittick said.

Despite calls to keep the migrants on the island, Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker and the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency started moving them from the island to a military base on Cape Cod that houses an emergency shelter, putting them out of sight of the island’s deep-pocketed and well-connected inhabitants, who include former Secretary of State John Kerry, comedians Amy Schumer and Seth Myers, director Spike Lee and ex-Obama aide Valerie Jarrett.

“The people who live there are rich and removed from real life,” Chittick said, labeling them all “phonies.” “These people will love the fact the immigrants have been dropped off on their island, because now they can feel like part of the solution, helping these few people. But they’d never let them into their houses unless they were working.”

Former President Obama and wife Michelle, pictured at the unveiling of their official White House portraits last week, own a large estate in Martha's Vineyard.
Former President Barack Obama and wife Michelle, pictured at the unveiling of their official White House portraits last week, own a large estate in Martha’s Vineyard.
Getty Images
The Obamas' $12 million home
Chittik said the Obamas should open their $12 million home (above) to the arriving migrants and set up a camp for them on the property.
Landvest

Chittick told The Post that the moneyed elites started to move to Martha’s Vineyard a little more than decade ago, seeking a peaceful island lifestyle — and pricing out most working-class residents in the process.

On Thursday, DeSantis chartered two planes to transport around 50 migrants from Texas via Florida to Martha’s Vineyard to taunt Democratic leaders and stoke opposition to President Biden’s lax border policies.

The stunt sparked an outrage among liberals, who accused DeSantis of using the migrants as “political pawns.”

Pool of the house
The house was the site of Obama’s massive 60th birthday party in August 2021.
Landvest

A defiant DeSantis told a crowd of supporters on Thursday that his critics were hypocrites for crying foul over the arrival of migrants in their state, even as border towns in Arizona and Texas are being overwhelmed with foreign nationals.

“The minute even a small fraction of what those border towns deal with every day is brought to their front door, they go berserk, and they’re so upset that this is happening,” he said. “And it just shows you that their virtue-signaling is a fraud.”

Chittick suggested that Martha’s Vineyard’s wealthy residents should use their resources to set up camps with food, clothing and sanitary facilities on their vast properties, “not just for publicity, for a photo opportunity.”

Migrants
Island officials labeled the arrival of the migrants a “humanitarian crisis.”
AP

The island’s officials proclaimed the arrival of the 53 migrants a “humanitarian crisis,” but Chittick pushed back against that label.

“It’s not a crisis for the people in Martha’s Vineyard,” she argued. “They will easily be able to take care of the immigrants. I’m sure people will be donating plenty of money, blankets and everything they need. They will be some of the best cared for of the immigrants to cross the border.”

Chittick compared the small number of migrants who were flown by DeSantis to Martha’s Vineyard on Thursday to the “thousands who are pouring into El Paso” in Texas.

“I applaud [Texas Gov. Greg] Abbot and DeSantis,” she said. “They are saying, ‘Really? You want us to take care of everyone, while you’re not lifting a finger?’”

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