On June 7 (local time), Kamala Harris, Vice President of the United States of America, told Guatemalan migrants not to come to the US. Harris was on her first foreign trip as the VP. She said, “I want to be clear to folks in this region who are thinking about making that dangerous trek to the United States-Mexico border: Do not come. Do not come.”
“I want to be clear to folks in this region who are thinking about making that dangerous trek to the United States-Mexico border: Do not come. Do not come.”— The Recount (@therecount) June 7, 2021
— VP Kamala Harris during news conference with Guatemalan president Alejandro Giammattei pic.twitter.com/dYNwu7STbS
She further added that the United States would continue to enforce its laws and secure the borders. Notably, former President Trump was criticized extensively on multiple occasions for his policies against illegal immigrants.
Migrants have to find a legal way to enter the US
Harris echoed the stand of President Joe Biden’s administration that the migrants have to look for a legal pathway to come to the US. Otherwise, they would be turned away if they cross the border illegally. Earlier, it was reported that the Biden administration is looking to overhaul the existing immigration programs to make the process easier and cheaper. Interestingly, since Biden took office, a record number of migrants have arrived at the US border, including hundreds of unaccompanied migrants.
There were claims that the increase in the number of migrants on the border is linked to the “nice guy” image of President Biden. However, Biden refuted the claims and claimed that the surge is because of the weather and natural disasters in South America. He also blamed former President Trump for the limited legal pathways for legal immigration in the US. He said, “He dismantled all the elements that exist to deal with what had been a problem, and has been continuing to be a problem for a long time. What we’re doing now is attempting to rebuild the system that can accommodate what is happening today.”
Harris blamed corruption for migration
During her trip, Harris blamed corruption in South America for the migration of the people to the US. She announced that the US would create a task force that would work with the local prosecutors to embed a “sense of hope” in the locals so that they do not flee their homeland. She said, “We are creating this task force to address corruption, to address human smuggling, doing the work to make sure certain progress be made if we are going to attract investment.” The task force would comprise officials from the Departments of Justice, Treasury and State.
Harris further added that people flee their homeland to save themselves from some sort of harm. She said, “Most people don’t want to leave where their grandmother lives. When they do, it’s because they are fleeing some type of harm, or because to stay means they cannot provide for their essential needs and the needs of their family.”