GOP Lawmaker Publicly Misidentifies March Madness Athletes As Illegal Migrants

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Julianna Frieman Contributor
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Republican Michigan State House Rep. Matt Maddock publicly misidentified March Madness athletes as illegal migrants Wednesday on social media.

Maddock posted a photo on X showing three white buses from a distance, falsely claiming that the vehicles were “just loaded up with illegal invaders.” The buses and police escort spotted in the photo were actually being used to transport the Gonzaga University men’s basketball team, Detroit-based WXYZ journalist Maxwell White wrote in reply, according to RawStory. The outlet was cited by X in a community note fact-checking Maddock’s post.

“Happening right now. Three buses just loaded up with illegal invaders at Detroit Metro,” Maddock wrote on X. “Anyone have any idea where they’re headed with their police escort?”

White was also cited by X in the community note. He wrote that the basketball team was boarding the buses to attend a Sweet 16 March Madness game, calling the Michigan state lawmaker’s remarks mistaking the basketball team for illegal migrants “wild.” (RELATED: Nine Illegal Migrants Charged Among Dozens Who Stormed Texas National Guard: REPORT)

“Just to be clear, this was the Gonzaga basketball team,” White wrote on X. “Photos show Gonzaga getting on an Allegiant plane to Detroit for the Sweet 16, and Flight Radar shows a plane from GEG to DTW landed at 7:25 p.m., around the time this photo was posted. This is a wild tweet.”

The Wayne County Airport Authority confirmed in a statement that four college basketball teams arrived in Detroit Wednesday for the second weekend of the NCAA’s March Madness basketball tournament, according to NBC News. They reportedly said the “buses seen in a photograph circulating online were transporting the basketball teams and their respective staffs.”