KJP says Republicans ‘getting in the way’ of securing border, denies Biden’s visit is political

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Wednesday downplayed the notion that President Biden’s trip to the U.S.-Mexico border on Thursday was political and blamed Republicans for making the crisis worse. President Biden and his Republican rival, former President Donald Trump, are both scheduled to make dueling trips to the border on Thursday. Biden will visit Brownsville, while Trump will visit Eagle Pass, an area that has seen high levels of illegal crossings and has become a flashpoint in an ongoing battle between Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and the Biden administration.  Responding to a reporter’s question that Biden’s visit was merely in reaction to Trump’s visit – during an election year, no less – Jean-Pierre said the president’s schedule couldn’t just be upended on such short notice. “[The president] has said that when Republicans rejected that Senate bipartisan bill on border security, on the immigration policy to fix a broken system that has been broken for decades, he said he was going to take it directly to the American people and also at the same time, hear from law enforcement and frontline personnel who deal with this issue every day,” Jean-Pierre said. President Biden, despite reversing many Trump-era border policies upon taking office, has repeatedly said his hands are tied on the border issue, saying the matter must be solved via legislation. A bipartisan Biden-backed border security deal crafted by Senate negotiators amid an unprecedented surge in immigration collapsed in early February after Trump signaled his disapproval. That, in turn, has given the White House fodder to accuse Republicans of not taking the border issue seriously. WHITE HOUSE CALLS FOR SANCTUARY CITIES TO COOPERATE WITH ICE, AMID FUROR OVER ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT CRIMESJean-Pierre said Republicans, having rejected the deal, are “getting in the way” when it comes to fixing the border. “This is not about politics for this president. This is about how we’re going to fix an issue that the majority of Americans care about, a broken immigration system, the challenges at the border. That’s why the president thought it was important to go at this time,” Jean-Pierre said. Fox News’ Jacqui Heinrich noted that the administration has often criticized Republicans who go to the border to hold similar press conferences, writing them off as “publicity stunts” and “photo ops.”Jean-Pierre said Biden’s visit was “very different,” and repeated her assertion that Republicans “constantly get in the way.” “They consistently get in the way of what the president is trying to do to get more resources,” Jean-Pierre said. “They are turning this into a political stunt by listening to Donald Trump and saying that they need to kill it.” On the suggestion that Biden just happened to be going to the border during an election year, despite it being a problem for the past three years, Jean-Pierre pointed to Biden’s “comprehensive immigration policy” implemented on day one of his presidency. “He did that on the first day. That was his first piece of legislation. I would hope the American people would see how serious this president was or is about fixing this issue,” she said. MARYLAND COUNTY TO OPEN ICE COOPERATION AFTER PAST STONEWALLING, RELEASE OF ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTSAfter taking office, Biden signed two executive orders on immigration and pledged to roll back many of the policies put in place by his predecessor, former President Donald Trump. Within a few months, Biden took more than 90 actions related to the border. Under the president’s stewardship, illegal immigration has skyrocketed to historic levels. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) report for fiscal 2023 showed that the number of illegal immigrants on the non-detained docket soared from 3.7 million in FY 2021 to nearly 4.8 million in FY 2022 to nearly 6.2 million in FY 2023. Thursday will mark Biden’s second visit to the border since taking office. The area he is visiting, the Rio Grande Valley, which includes Brownsville, gives Biden a platform where illegal crossings have dropped sharply. The area is also a friendly congressional district that – as noted by Border Patrol Union President Brandon Judd – historically hasn’t seen much illegal traffic, in large part due to the infrastructure Trump provided while in office, and more recently due to the actions of Texas Gov. Greg Abbott since Biden took office. 
Go to Source

Scroll to Top