Ambassador Roberta Jacobson, National Security Council Coordinator for the U.S. Southern Border, appeared to admit during Wednesday’s White House press conference that the Biden administration’s policies have caused the crisis that is occurring on the southern border.
Jacobson, while speaking Spanish in an effort to communicate with those who might be attempting to come to the U.S., said that the border was “not closed,” remarks that she took several minutes to correct. While speaking in English, Jacobson did clearly state that the border was “not open” and stated that people should not “make the dangerous trip to try and enter the U.S. in an irregular fashion.”
The perils of code-switching, and a major gaffe by Roberta Jabobson whilst warning migrants not to make the journey to the U.S.: "So I believe that it's very important to highlight that THE BORDER IS NOT CLOSED…" pic.twitter.com/9Kf7gJzWyG
— Jorge Bonilla (@BonillaJL) March 10, 2021
A few minutes later, Jacobson gets it right: "THE BORDER IS CLOSED". Wise to say it in Spanish and bypass filters and interpretations so long as you don't commit any own-goals. pic.twitter.com/xJ3l1ZXscg
— Jorge Bonilla (@BonillaJL) March 10, 2021
“Do you think it’s a coincidence that as soon as Trump and his immigration policy were on the way out and Biden and his stated policy were on the way in, this historic surge at the border started?” Fox News reporter Peter Doocy asked.
“Well, first of all, one of the things I think is important is we’ve seen surges before. Surges tend to respond to hope, and there was a significant hope for a more humane policy after four years of pent up demand,” Jacobson responded. “So I don’t know whether I would call that a coincidence, but I certainly think that the idea that a more humane policy would be in place may have driven people to make that decision. But perhaps more importantly, it definitely drove smugglers to express disinformation, to spread disinformation about what was now possible. We know that.”
Watch: NSC official Roberta Jackson just inadvertently admitted that Joe Biden's immigration agenda is driving the border crisis: pic.twitter.com/rnsOaWQiP5
— John Cooper (@thejcoop) March 10, 2021
Later, when pressed by CNN reporter Kaitlan Collins about whether the administration would finally call what is happening on the southern border a “crisis,” Jacobson responded by saying that it doesn’t matter what the administration calls it.
“Just to follow up quickly, you’re telling them they should not come,” Collins said. “Would you describe what’s happening on the border as a crisis, given how these numbers are spiking so much week by week?”
“I’m not trying to be cute here, but I think the fact of the matter is, we have to do what we do regardless of what anybody calls the situation,” Jacobson responded. “And the fact is, we are all focused on improving the situation, on changing to a more humane and efficient system. And whatever you call it wouldn’t change what we’re doing because we have urgency from the president on down to fix our system and make sure that we are better at dealing with the hopes and the dreams of these migrants in their home country.”
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) March 10, 2021
At the end of the press conference, a reporter pressed White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki about Jacobson accidentally saying that the border was “not closed.”
“Just to follow up on something that Ambassador Jacobson said, and I think you may have gotten a note about this, that she … first time she said that the border is not closed. And she then, when she was speaking in Spanish and then, later on … in Spanish again said the border is closed,” the reporter said. “It seems like she, I guess, misspoke the first time considering your overall message, but are you concerned that now that she has misspoken, that that is going to be picked up and disseminated across the Spanish-speaking world as the message from the administration?”
“Well, given she also said that the border is closed, we’re hopeful that that is what will be picked up,” Psaki responded. “And that [has] clearly and consistently been our message, so that is certainly our hope.”
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