Kamala Harris Dodges Questions About Her Non-Appearance at the Border
“I haven’t been to Europe,” Vice President Kamala Harris actually argued Tuesday in her latest attempt to justify not visiting the US-Mexico border. Well, it makes as much sense as the rest of the Biden-Harris approach to this crisis.
“I’m in Guatemala because my focus is dealing with the root causes of migration.”
– Vice President Kamala Harris to Lester Holt
She’s right. But Republicans always tend to focus on quick criminal fixes instead of sustainable preventative solutions.pic.twitter.com/AtTRoYo6RI
— Keith Boykin (@keithboykin) June 8, 2021
In Guatemala as part of her assignment to address “root causes” of the border surge, Harris chatted with NBC’s Lester Holt, who asked why she hasn’t visited the border in the 11 weeks since President Joe Biden made her point person on the issue.
“At some point, you know, we are going to the border,” Harris said. “We’ve been to the border. So this whole thing about the border. We’ve been to the border.”
Holt replied, “You haven’t been to the border” (as veep); she Harris countered, “And I haven’t been to Europe. And I mean, I don’t understand the point that you’re making. I’m not discounting the importance of the border.”
The point is that she might learn something from an on-the-ground view. Surely that’s why she went down to take a look as a US senator during the Trump years. But now she says such trips are just “grand gestures”?
Customs and Border Protection officers intercepted nearly 900,000 migrants from Oct. 1, 2020, to May 31 of this year, according to preliminary data obtained by Axios on Monday. Last month alone saw 170,000 apprehended. And the number not from Mexico or the Northern Triangle is up to 50,000, five times the level in January.
What are the “root causes” of the surge?
Ironically, Guatemalan President Alejandro Giammattei, who she visited this week, flagged them for CBS on Sunday: When Biden took office, “The message changed to: ‘We’re going to reunite families, we’re going to reunite children,’” he said. “The very next day, the coyotes were here organizing groups of children to take them to the United States.”
Harris mouthed the right words Monday by Giammattei’s side: “I want to be clear to folks in this region who are thinking about making that dangerous trek to the United States-Mexico border: Do not come, do not come.”
Now all she and Biden have to do is change all the policies that send the reverse message. They don’t even have to go to Europe to do it.