Vice President Kamala Harris suggested during an international press conference in Guatemala on Monday that she will not visit the U.S.-Mexico border to see the Biden administration’s border crisis because doing so is a “grand gesture.”
“And then one more just because we’re going to Mexico tomorrow, Madam Vice President, there have been questions about why you and President Biden have yet to visit the border, the U.S. southern border and I’m wondering if you can answer some of those,” a reporter said to Harris at the press conference. “Republicans have charged that you’re not taking the situation there seriously.”
“So how do you respond to that criticism?” the reporter asked. “And when will that visit come?”
“On the issue of Republican’s political attacks, or criticism, or even concerns, the reason I’m here in Guatemala as my first trip as vice president of the United States, is because this is one of our highest priorities,” Harris claimed. “And I came here to be here on the ground, to speak with the leader of this nation, around what we can do in a way that is significant, is tangible, and has real results. And I will continue to be focused on that kind of work as opposed to grand gestures.”
Kamala Harris admits that being “on the ground” shows priorities…while saying she won’t visit the US border. pic.twitter.com/A8l2mG0oCb
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) June 7, 2021
Fox News reported:
Harris, who was tasked by President Biden to be his point person on the border crisis, has been criticized by Republicans for going 75 days without visiting the U.S. border with Mexico. The White House claimed that her mandate is to try and solve the border crisis at its root cause, and a visit to the border would do little to achieve that.
Harris’ detractors say her decision not to visit the border is a calculated one. If the situation does not improve and she comes up short on her highest-profile task, that would not bode well for her political future. But if she fails to score a diplomatic victory, the administration can easily place blame on another country.
April was the second-busiest month on record for unaccompanied children encountered at the border, which followed March’s all-time high.
RNC Chairwoman Ronna McDaniel slammed Harris in a tweet earlier in the day, writing: “It’s been 75 days since Kamala Harris was named border czar. There’s been no press conference, no visit to the border, and the crisis is worse than ever.”
It’s been 75 days since Kamala Harris was named border czar.
There’s been no press conference, no visit to the border, and the crisis is worse than ever.
— Ronna McDaniel (@GOPChairwoman) June 7, 2021
Rep. Byron Donalds (R-FL) also slammed Harris over the issue on Monday, writing: “The Biden-Harris open border policies have created the worst humanitarian & national security crisis our border has seen in decades. After traveling to our Southern Border twice this year alone, I have witnessed firsthand the devastating impact of the Biden-Harris Border Crisis.”
The Biden-Harris open border policies have created the worst humanitarian & national security crisis our border has seen in decades.
After traveling to our Southern Border twice this year alone, I have witnessed firsthand the devastating impact of the Biden-Harris Border Crisis. https://t.co/Ru6Gv7wdDo
— Congressman Byron Donalds (@RepDonaldsPress) June 7, 2021
Mississippi Republican Governor Tate Reeves also called out Harris on the matter, writing: “. @POTUS policy shift led to #BidenBorderCrisis. 75 days ago @VP Kamala Harris was put in charge to fix it. Where is she today? Guatemala. A trip to a foreign land but ZERO visits to our southern border! Hard to fix anything when her priorities are not America’s priorities!”
A trip to a foreign land but ZERO visits to our southern border! Hard to fix anything when her priorities are not America’s priorities!
— Tate Reeves (@tatereeves) June 7, 2021