Representative Henry Cuellar, a Texas-based Democrat, has recently skewered Vice President Kamala Harris for merely engaging in a “check in the box” trip to the United States-Mexico border. This criticism comes on the heels of the announcement that Kamala will be visiting El Paso, Texas, rather than vastly harder-hit areas, such as Rio Grande, during the border crisis
Cuellar resides in Laredo, a town on the U.S.-Mexico border. While he does give Harris credit for finally venturing south to the border, he also points out that her visit falls short of expectations as she will not have a complete picture of the border if she fails to visit towns suffering under the humanitarian crisis, including McAllen and Roma.
Cuellar indicates that he received a phone call from one of his friends in Border Patrol, who inquired as to why Kamala was venturing to El Paso instead of other cities that have “140% higher crossings,” which is exactly “where the activity is at.” Cuellar noted that he was unable to respond to his friend’s inquiry.
In addition, Cuellar also notes that Kamala’s visit is a start, but that even if she does end up in El Paso, she really should spend significant time with “stakeholders,” “landowners,” and “cities and counties officials.” Cuellar also added that he hopes Kamala will sit down and listen to the state’s “brave men and women in green and in blue.”
Moreover, Harris also never bothered to respond to Cuellar’s own invitation, wherein he invited her to come see the border crisis in his particular district. To add insult to injury, Cuellar learned of Kamala’s impending border trip courtesy of the media, rather than directly from the Biden administration itself.
It is likely that Kamala’s handlers merely told her, “if you gotta go down to the border, go to something that is safer to go to, that is politically safer,” Cuellar continued. He noted that it is likely that Kamala was advised to not visit the area of lower Rio Grande where border activity is the highest, especially with families and children, since “politically it’s harder to do that.”
However, Cuellar wryly noted that Kamala can now merely check off the “border visit” box if she does visit El Paso, Texas, even if she avoids the other areas.
Trump also weighed in on the border crisis, noting that Kamala “would have never gone” if he was not going to do so in an upcoming trip with Governor Abbott. Trump also observed that both Biden and Harris received the “strongest border in American history,” though it is now “by far the worst.”