A group of House Republicans has sent a letter to President Joe Biden demanding he removes Vice President Kamala Harris from her position as the leader in handling the immigration issues at the border.
The lawmakers, led by Rep. Glenn Grothman (R-Wis. 06), cited Harris’s inaction in her role in the U.S. border crisis.
“The @VP STILL hasn’t visited the border. You can’t truly know the situation until you speak with people on the ground,” Grothman wrote in a tweet on Friday, June 18.
“I and 55 of my colleagues sent this letter to @POTUS demanding her removal from this position because 180k encounters, a 21-year high, is unacceptable,” he added.
In the letter, the House Republicans claimed that the vice president had not visited the border to see the worsening crisis first-hand since she was assigned to the task nearly three months ago.
“Despite being in the midst of a border crisis this country has not seen in two decades, Vice President Harris has not yet shown adequate interest in observing this crisis first-hand,” the letter wrote.
“In the 85 days since the Vice President has been tasked with solving this crisis, she has yet to visit the border and meet with Border Patrol agents, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials and local law enforcement officials,” the letter continued.
The lawmakers stressed that it is essential that Harris should meet those officials to learn about their perspectives and observations about the origins and motivations of the thousands of people coming to the U.S. border every day.
Citing data from the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), the lawmakers indicated that the agency encountered more than 180,000 individuals at the southern border in May 2021, compared to just more than 23,000 during the same period last year, a 675% increase.
Though Harris has recently traveled to Mexico and Guatemala to resolve the issues, the Republicans argued that the vice president “wrongly presumes that ‘root causes’ of migration can only stem from a migrant’s country.’”
“Even if we assume that ‘root causes’ only stem from a migrant’s country of origin, the exclusive focus on Central American countries ignores the fact that we see many migrants attempting to illegallly cross our southern border from countries all over the world, including Russia, Brazil, Cuba, and Haiti,” they added.
In addition, that presumption ignores the role of policy decisions made in the first months of the Biden administration played in enticing migrants to illegallly cross the border, they said.
The lawmakers concluded that “this country cannot afford another minute of inaction from Vice President Harris.”
“We sincerely urge you find someone else in your administration to assist you in getting a handle on this border crisis,” they said to Biden.
The floods of illegal migrants to the U.S.–Mexico border have become one of the most pressing challenges for the Biden-Harris administration after they reversed the immigration policies from the Trump administration, including canceling the construction of the border wall.
Former President Donald Trump is scheduled to visit the southern border later in June following an invitation from Texas Gov. Greg Abbot.