After more than 80 days since President Biden tasked Vice Presiden Harris as his point person to lead the response to the ongoing border crisis, she is finally visiting the border this Friday. The announcement and timing of her border visit conveniently coincide with the planned visit by presidential predecessor and rival Donald Trump who is set to visit El Paso next week.
🚨WOW. Biden and Harris blinked.🚨
Kamala Harris is only going to the border because President Trump is going to the border.
Not only does this put more emphasis on Pres. Trump’s visit, Harris doesn’t have good answers on Remain in Mexico, Catch & Release, or Wall Construction. https://t.co/UWuN9EaLa6
— Jason Miller (@JasonMillerinDC) June 23, 2021
Harris and her team have repeatedly pushed back at criticism that neither she nor the president have gone to visit the U.S.-Mexico border, arguing that she is more focused on tackling the destabilizing conditions that are causing thousands of migrants from Central America to head to the border seeking refuge. That was the central message during her first foreign trip, a two-day visit to Mexico and Guatemala earlier this month. While there, Harris met with local officials and implored migrants not to make the journey across Mexico into the United States.
Her trip, however, was complicated by continued questions over whether she would go to the border to view the situation there. Harris’ response — in which she downplayed the need and noted that she also hadn’t visited Europe — only amplified the criticism.
The number of migrants arriving at the U.S. southern border has soared in the months since the Biden administration took office. In May, more than 180,000 migrants were apprehended at the border, according to monthly figures from Customs and Border Protection.
The U.S. has also seen a record number of unaccompanied children taken into custody under the Biden administration. More than 18,800 unaccompanied children crossed the border in March, according to CBP figures; the highest monthly number previously recorded was more than 11,000 children who crossed the border in May 2019. The number of child arrivals has steadily decreased in April and May but remains well above that 2019 record.
The Biden administration-especially Kamala has caught increased criticism over her avoidance of visiting the border. The Vice President has attempted to explain away the crisis and say that poor economic conditions and climate change are the main drivers behind the surge but even Guatemala’s president pointed to the Biden administration’s weak messaging as the true culprit behind the surge.
Upon hearing the news Kamala Harris is finally visiting the border former President Trump released a message calling out her convenient timing of the visit.
“After months of ignoring the crisis at the Southern Border, it is great that we got Kamala Harris to finally go and see the tremendous destruction and death that they’ve created—a direct result of Biden ending my very tough but fair Border policies.
Harris and Biden were given the strongest Border in American history. And now, it is by far the worst in American history.
If Governor Abbott and I weren’t going there next week, she would have never gone!” Trump said.