US Vice President Kamala Harris will visit the country’s southern border with Mexico on Friday for the first time, her office announced on Wednesday, following heavy criticism from Republicans and Democrats and an announced visit to the area by former President Donald Trump.
President Joe Biden tasked Harris with overseeing the border crisis that the White House has sought to play down and blame the previous administration for the ongoing problems.
“Earlier this year, the President asked the Vice President to oversee our diplomatic efforts to address the root causes of migration from El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras. As a part of this ongoing work, the Vice President traveled to Guatemala and Mexico earlier this month and will travel to El Paso on Friday,” a statement from the vice president’s office read.
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas will also be on the trip, according to the statement.
Earlier this month, Harris made her first trip to Mexico and Guatemala, two countries that see the most immigrants try to make it to the US. She cautioned those thinking of crossing the US border illegally not to do see. “Do not come. Do not come,” she said during a press conference.
The Biden administration is looking at ways to help the economic situation in Central American countries in a bid to discourage people from looking to flee their homeland for a better future in the US.
Trump released a statement shortly after the announcement that Harris would visit the border and said she wouldn’t have gone if he didn’t announce plans to do so.
Thank you President Trump for getting Vice President Harris to finally go to the southern border.— Rep. Jim Jordan (@Jim_Jordan) June 23, 2021
She would never go without you announcing your trip first.
A group of Republican officials and Texas Governor Greg Abbott are expected to visit the US-Mexico border this month with a group of reporters due to a reported rise in migrants crossing into the US.