Vice President Kamala Harris met Friday with federal brokers and unaccompanied migrant kids on the southern US border as a part of a visit to display the Biden administration’s dedication to “orderly and humane” immigration insurance policies.
The transient however closely-watched go to by President Joe Biden’s deputy got here within the wake of her mission this month to Central America and Mexico, the place she addressed the foundation causes of the migration disaster which have led to a surge in undocumented folks in search of entry to america.
Republican critics had hammered Harris, the daughter of Indian and Jamaican immigrants, for failing to go to the US-Mexico border for an on-the-ground evaluation, after which making feedback that appeared to downplay the disaster.
The vice chairman’s journey additionally comes simply days earlier than a go to to the border by Biden’s predecessor Donald Trump, who has warned that the present administration’s extra humane strategy to immigration was frightening fairly than stopping a disaster.
“It was at all times the plan to come back right here,” she advised reporters after touchdown in El Paso, Texas.
Harris, whom Biden tasked with overseeing efforts to deal with the migration disaster, stated she believed the White Home insurance policies have been working.
“The president and I are completely dedicated to making sure that our immigration system is orderly and humane, and I do imagine that we’re making progress in that regard,” she stated.
She additionally pressured that border points have to be addressed in a method that’s “knowledgeable by reality and knowledgeable by actuality,” if they’re to be resolved in a productive method.
Harris spoke with younger migrant ladies who have been being processed at a Customs and Border Safety port of entry facility, then met with immigration advocates and CBP brokers as she toured a processing middle.
Whereas her journey to Guatemala and Mexico was geared toward addressing the foundation causes of migration — lack of financial alternative, extreme violence and corruption, worry of drug cartels — Harris stated her border journey served to “reinforce” the necessity to deal with the character of these causes or face a continued border disaster.
Harris stated extra may very well be achieved if folks “stopped the rhetoric” on the problem.
However in a comment that rapidly earned rebukes from conservatives, Democratic congresswoman Veronica Escobar, who represents El Paso, stood subsequent to Harris whereas evaluating the southern border to what was as soon as the busiest immigration level in america.
“Welcome to El Paso… to the brand new Ellis Island,” Escobar stated.