A letter signed by 56 House Republicans says it is time for President Joe Biden to give the job of solving the border crisis to someone other than Vice President Kamala Harris.
Biden named Harris his point person for addressing the root causes of the immigration surge back in March.
“While we are clear that people should not come to the border now, we also understand that we will enforce the law and that we also — because we can chew gum and walk at the same time — must address the root causes that — that cause people to make the trek,” the vice president said at the time.
While she has met with leaders in Mexico and Guatemala, Harris still has not visited the border.
Republican Rep. Glenn Grothman of Wisconsin, who is leading the effort to have Harris divested of any role in border policy, posted the letter on his Twitter account on Thursday.
The letter notes that two months into the vice president’s assignment, Customs and Border Protection agents encountered 180,034 illegal immigrants at the border.
“This figure does not even include ‘got aways’, or those who sneak in without detection, which CBP officials estimate to be around 1,000 per day, compared to an average of just under 200 ‘got aways’ per day in fiscal year 2020,” the letter said.
The @VP STILL hasn’t visited the border. You can’t truly know the situation until you speak with people on the ground. 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. pic.twitter.com/PJE0RpgTaV
— Rep. Glenn Grothman (@RepGrothman) June 17, 2021
The letter said Harris has found what to her are better things to do than deal with America’s top crisis.
“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 said.
“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 said.
The letter noted that remaining in the political orbit of Washington deprives the vice president of learning the facts about the crisis from those dealing with it every day.
“In our experience, it is important to meet with these officials to learn about their perspectives and observations about the origins and motivations of the thousands of people coming here every day. It is an insult to our hardworking Border Patrol, ICE, and local law enforcement officials that put their lives on the line every day that the Vice President has yet to speak with them,” the letter said.
The letter harpoons Democratic talking points about addressing only the root causes of immigration in three Central American countries.
“Vice President Harris wrongly presumes that ‘root causes’ of migration can only stem from a migrant’s country of origin,” it said. “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 illegally cross our southern border from countries all over the world.”
The lawmakers also said in their letter they were “aware of no dramatic changes in Central American countries over the last few months that would result in such a wide gap of encounters at the southern border compared to last year.”
There is one change they noted: “the role of policy decisions made in the first four months of your administration play in enticing migrants to illegally cross out southern border.”
“At the time of her appointment, you stated. ‘I can think of nobody who is better qualified to do this’. We disagree,” the letter to Biden said.
“This country cannot afford another minute of inaction from Vice President Harris,” the letter stated, before closing by adopting a tone of commiserating with Biden over an appointment gone sour.
“While you have publicly defended the Vice President, even you must be discouraged with her inaction,” the letter said. “We have all made mistakes in hiring and understand when someone else needs to be assigned to a task. We sincerely urge you to find someone else in your administration to assist you in getting a handle on this border crisis.”
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This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.