(CBSDFW.COM) – It was announced Wednesday that Vice President Kamala Harris will be visiting El Paso, Texas, on Friday for a trip to the U.S.-Mexico border. The news is drawing reaction from top officials of the state who say she should have made the trip a long time ago.
Friday’s trip will be Harris’ first as vice president months after she was named as the lead of the Biden administration’s response to the influx in migrants entering the U.S. illegally. She has received criticism from both Democrats and Republicans about why she hadn’t gone yet.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, released a statement on Harris’ visit to El Paso:
“Right now, the Biden-Harris Administration is functioning as the last mile of a human trafficking and illegal drug network that cartels are exploiting. The Biden-Harris Administration has repeatedly made reckless policy decisions leading to the massive surge of illegal immigrants flooding our southern border. It only took more than half a million illegal immigrants entering the United States, more than 400,000 pounds of drugs seized, 19 U.S. Senators traveling to the southern border, and 92 days after being appointed border crisis czar for Kamala Harris to visit the southern border. Maybe after her visit, the administration will reverse course and start enforcing the law and protecting our border.”
U.S. Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, criticized the vice president for choosing to go to El Paso rather than the Rio Grande Valley to see the border.
“After all that, @VP isn’t even going to the right place,” Cornyn tweeted.
— Senator John Cornyn (@JohnCornyn) June 23, 2021
Gov. Greg Abbott also tweeted remarks, saying, “After 91 days of being Border Czar, VP Harris is not even going where the crisis is taking place!”
Harris will be visiting Texas alongside Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas.
“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 spokesperson for Harris said.
The vice president’s trip also comes days before former President Donald Trump is expected to visit the southern border with Abbott.