Fact Check: Is Joe Biden Spending $395 a Night for Migrants' Hotel Rooms?

As President Joe Biden's immigration policy comes under increased scrutiny by Republicans and Democrats, migrant detention has emerged as a point of contention.

Following criticism over conditions in which migrants—particularly children—were held, the federal government struck an $86.9 million contract to temporarily house migrant families in hotels.

The Claim

In a widely shared tweet, Representative Lauren Boebert (R-Colo.) claimed the funds allocated by the contract result in migrant families staying in hotel rooms costing $395 a night.

"So Biden is spending $86,000,000 to purchase hotel rooms for 1,200 illegal alien families for six months," Boebert posted on Sunday.

"By that math, he's spending around $395 a night per room. How many of you have stayed in a $395/night hotel room?"

So Biden is spending $86,000,000 to purchase hotel rooms for 1,200 illegal alien families for six months.

By that math, he’s spending around $395 a night per room.

How many of you have stayed in a $395/night hotel room?

— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) March 22, 2021

The claim had previously been tweeted by Lavern Spicer, a Republican congressional candidate who ran to represent Florida's 24th district but lost to Democrat Frederica Wilson.

"If you do the math, Joe Biden is spending $395 a night on hotel rooms for each illegal alien," Spicer said. "I never stayed in a $395 a night hotel room. I guess I should become an illegal alien. They get it all."

The Facts

Axios, citing officials from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), first reported the Biden administration awarded a six-month $86.9 million contract for hotel rooms near the border to temporarily shelter about 1,200 migrant family members who crossed over.

The contract was made with Endeavors, a nonprofit organization based in San Antonio, Texas.

Tae D. Johnson, acting director of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), which was involved in the agreement, released the following statement:

"U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has signed a short-term contract with the non-profit division of Endeavors to provide temporary shelter and processing services for families who have not been expelled and are therefore placed in immigration proceedings for their removal from the United States.

"The $86.9 million contract provides 1,239 beds and other necessary services. The families will receive a comprehensive health assessment that includes COVID-19 testing."

In response to an email inquiry by Newsweek, ICE has not provided additional details on the contents of the contract, instead reiterating Johnson's statement.

Newsweek has contacted Endeavors for comment.

The Ruling

False.

There is no indication that the $86.9 million contract exclusively foots the bills incurred by hotel rooms. According to ICE's statement, the contract also covers "other necessary services," so it's not $395 a night for a room.

Additionally, a misleading number was used in calculations made to reach the result of $395. Officials did not indicate 1,200 family units would be housed, nor that 1,200 hotel rooms would be made available.

Axios cited 1,200 individuals, while ICE said 1,239 beds would be provided.

Migrants are expelled from the U.S.
Central American migrants are expelled from the United States by the Paso del Norte-Santa Fe international bridge, from El Paso, Texas, to Ciudad Juarez, Mexico, on March 18, 2021. HERIKA MARTINEZ/AFP via Getty Images