White House Says Biden is 'Familiar' With US-Mexico Border, Cites 2008 Trip

© REUTERS / Veronica CardenasA U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent monitors single-adult male detainees at Border Patrol station in McAllen, Texas, U.S. July 12, 2019
A U.S. Customs and Border Protection agent monitors single-adult male detainees at Border Patrol station in McAllen, Texas, U.S. July 12, 2019 - Sputnik International, 1920, 23.10.2021
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki was asked last month whether US President Joe Biden - a former US senator and vice president - has ever taken an official trip to the southern border. New government data has shown that some 1.7 million migrants have been detained at the US-Mexico border within the past year, the most arrests since 2000.
On Friday, the White House press secretary pushed back on questions about a need for Biden to make an urgent "photo op" trip to the US-Mexico border amid ongoing immigration issues with Venezuelan and Central American migrants.

"There has been reporting that he did drive through the border when he was on the campaign trail in 2008 and he is certainly familiar with the, and it stuck with him – with the fact that in El Paso [Texas] the border goes right through the center of town," Psaki told Fox News' Peter Doocy.

She also highlighted that Biden has made several trips over the years to areas in Central America, where a significant number of migrants are said to be fleeing from.
Netizens were noticeably unsatisfied with the date of Biden's last reported visit to the US-Mexico border.
Psaki's comments came alongside the publication of US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) data showing that a record number of 1.7 million migrants were arrested at the country's southern border. The fiscal 2021 data is the highest since fiscal year 2000, when more than 1.64 million migrants were detained by US agents.
Single adults accounted for around 1.1 million detentions during the period. The group made up about 60% of southern border arrests in September, according to the CBP.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott (R) proclaimed that the Biden administration "completely abandoned" Texas residents along the US-Mexico border, forcing the state and its National Guard on the defensive. Some GOP lawmakers in Congress have branded the movement as 'Biden's Border Crisis.'
In a Thursday social media post, the Texas governor highlighted that members of the Texas National Guard and Texas Department of Public Safety were working in support of Operation Lone Star - the state's effort to combat border-area cartels smuggling drugs and people into the US.
According to Abbott, cartels are "getting even more aggressive" and "are beginning to open fire on the National Guard that Texas has down on the border to secure the border."
Biden also referenced a trip to the southern border during a CNN town hall, acknowledging that he should revisit the area, but noting that he has been preoccupied with addressing some "$900 billion worth of damage done by hurricanes and floods."

"I’ve been there before and I haven’t— I mean, I know it well. I guess I should go down. But the whole point of it is I haven’t had a whole hell of a lot of time to get down," Biden said to CNN's Anderson Cooper.

The US president added that images from the border are not "pictures of kids lying on top of one another with" what appears to be "tarps on them." It is presumed Biden was referring to solar blankets provided by the US to migrant children in federal detention facilities.
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