National Border Patrol Council VP Art Del Cueto said on Friday that Vice President Kamala Harris visiting one of the least problematic areas of the southwest border is a “slap in the face” to Border Patrol agents.
“She is going to El Paso, which is the one area on the southwest border that is mostly controlled. That’s not where the problem is. If she wanted to see how bad it is with the entries, she would go to Rio Grande Valley,” Del Cueto told “The Faulkner Focus.”
“If she wanted to see how bad the people that are getting away are, she would come to Tucson, which is number one in the entire country when it comes to getaways,” Del Cueto said.
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Vice President Harris’ border trip is coming under fire as critics point out that she’s steering clear of the areas that have been hardest hit by the ongoing immigration crisis.
Harris’ trip to El Paso, Texas, on Friday, came 93 days after President Biden first tapped her to deal with the “root causes” of the border crisis.
“If Vice President Harris truly wanted to assess the situation at the border, she’d head to McAllen and sites along the Rio Grande Valley,” a senior border official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, told Fox News. “It will be worth seeing if this trip extends beyond a rubber stamp of ‘I visited the border.’”
Tom Homan, former acting Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) chief, said Harris “needs to go to the epicenter of this crisis.”
“Instead of going there and talking to the men and women dealing with that crisis and taking care of thousands of unaccompanied children, she picks El Paso because she doesn’t want to see the devastation that her administration’s policies have caused,” he said.
“Now, El Paso, is seeing a rise in crossings, absolutely a rise in drug crossings, but when you look at the crisis, why would you not go to the epicenter and talk to the men and women of Border Patrol and see what’s going on?” Homan noted separately in a Friday interview on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom.”
A Border Patrol who insisted on anonymity told Fox News he was “not surprised” Harris took so long to visit the border. “I’m not surprised. She doesn’t think this is a problem.”
Washington Post reporter Nick Miroff pointed out that Harris’ trip to El Paso allows her to avoid harder-hit areas in the Rio Grande Valley, where even Democratic officials have been critical of the Biden administration’s response to the border crisis.
The Rio Grande Valley (RGV) Sector has been especially hard hit by the crisis.
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Del Cueto was unimpressed by Harris visiting El Paso because “it is the one area that’s under control.”
“El Paso is the one area that is controlled and she is going for five hours. Honestly, it is a slap in the face to the men and women out there putting their lives on the line every day for at least 10 hours a day in areas that are a lot busier than where she is going,” Del Cueto said.
“She is getting the dog and pony show.”
Fox News’ Peter Hasson contributed to this report.