MSNBC anchor José Diaz-Balart on Wednesday criticized the White House’s lack of “urgency” and “outrage” toward the ongoing crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border.
President Joe Biden’s administration is set to end the Title 42, a Trump-era COVID-19 protocol allowing for the expulsion of migrants to prevent the spread of the virus, despite migrant encounters hitting record levels during 2022 fiscal year.
As Diaz-Balart spoke, live footage from MSNBC showed a long line of migrants lining up along the border fence as they awaited entry into the U.S. in the frigid cold without substantial resources.
“What a just tragic humanitarian crisis,” Diaz-Balart said.
“We just heard some of the horror stories that people face just when they get to Mexico and trying to get to the U.S. They’re being kidnapped, starved, raped, extorted, that’s just in Mexico … where is the urgency here? Where is the outrage that men, women and children are going through hell? And it seems as though unless there is some political aspect to this, there’s no outrage, there’s no focus.”
Migrant apprehension numbers exceeded a record-high of 2.3 million in the 2022 fiscal year, which began in October 2021. The 2023 fiscal year began with a record surge of over 230,000 migrants in October, 2022, alone. (RELATED: ‘Just Show Up’: Democratic Rep Calls On Biden To Visit Southern Border)
Maverick County Deputy Constable Frank Bowles told the Daily Caller in June that border agents have recovered one to two dead migrants per day due to drownings, dehydration and other causes. In August, Bowles told the Caller that agents discovered a 3-year-old child who drowned in the river beneath the port of entry. Footage, posted by Caller field reporter Jorge Ventura, captured two migrants who almost drowned from the Rio Grande’s strong currents.
Officials in Eagle Pass, Texas, have struggled to find spare spaces to bury unidentified, deceased migrants and have requested more refrigerators to store the bodies.
Biden told reporters on Dec. 6 that he has not visited the border “because there are more important things going on.” Former White House press secretary Jen Psaki told reporters that the president had last been near the border in 2008 while serving as vice president. At a Nov. 30 press briefing, current press secretary, Karine Jean-Pierre, refused to say when Biden last visited the border.
Officials in the Biden administration — most notably Vice President Kamala Harris and Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas — have assured the public that the border is “secure.”