Vice President Kamala Harris laughed off plans to visit US-Mexico border during an interview with NBC on Sunday, saying she hadn’t been to Europe and didn’t understand the point of host Lester Holt’s questioning why she hadn’t visited the southern border since President Joe Biden appointed her to lead the efforts in March.
“Do you have any plans to visit the border?” Holt asked the vice president.
“At some point,” Harris said, throwing her hands into the air. “We are going to the border. We’ve been to the border. So this whole thing about the border, we’ve been to the border. We’ve been to the border.”
“You haven’t been to the border,” Holt responded, emphasizing that Harris herself had yet to visit the border.
“And I haven’t been to Europe,” Harris said with a laugh. “I don’t understand the point that you’re making.”
“I’m not discounting the importance of the border,” she added.
During an international press conference in Guatemala on Monday, Harris said that she will not visit America’s southern border because to do so would be a “grand gesture.”
“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.”
On March 24, President Biden announced that he had tapped Harris to lead efforts at the southern border “because she’s the most qualified person to do it.”
“In addition to that, there’s about five other major things she’s handling, but I’ve asked her, the VP, today — because she’s the most qualified person to do it — to lead our efforts with Mexico and the Northern Triangle and the countries that help — are going to need help in stemming the movement of so many folks, stemming the migration to our southern border,” Biden said.
The border crisis continues to strain southern U.S. states as thousands of illegal immigrants cross into the United States, prompting Gov. Greg Abbott to issue a disaster declaration in Texas last week.
“President Biden’s open-border policies have paved the way for dangerous gangs and cartels, human traffickers, and deadly drugs like fentanyl to pour into our communities,” Abbott said in a statement.
“Meanwhile, landowners along the border are seeing their property damaged and vandalized on a daily basis while the Biden Administration does nothing to protect them,” he continued. “Texas continues to step up to confront the border crisis in the federal government’s absence, but more must be done. By declaring a state of disaster in these counties, Texas will have more resources and strategies at our disposal to protect landowners and enforce all federal and state laws to combat criminal activities stemming from the border crisis. Working together with local law enforcement, the state will continue to take robust and meaningful action to keep our communities safe.”