“We’re doing all we can.”
President Biden conceded on Tuesday that the looming migrant surge at the southern border will be “chaotic for a while” after the Title 42 border policy ends later this week.
Biden, 80, made the stunning admission that he’s not sure the US is prepared for the expected flood of migrants during a press conference that took place after he met with congressional leaders about the debt ceiling.
“I spent close to an hour with the Mexican president today. We’re doing all we can. The answer is it remains to be seen,” Biden said when asked if the US is ready for the influx of migrants arriving from Mexico.
“We’ve gotten overwhelming cooperation from Mexico. We also are in the process of setting up offices in Colombia and other places where you could – or someone seeking asylum can go first. So, it remains to be seen. It’s going to be chaotic for a while,” the president admitted.
The pandemic-era Title 42, which allowed law enforcement authorities to swiftly deport migrants apprehended crossing the border, comes to an end on Thursday along with the Covid-19 pandemic public health emergency.
The White House revealed in late January that the public health emergency would end this week and argued that it needed time to get the “necessary policies in place” to deal with the influx of migrants that would come with Title 42 being terminated.
“The Administration supports an orderly, predictable wind-down of Title 42, with sufficient time to put alternative policies in place. But if H.R. 382 becomes law and the Title 42 restrictions end precipitously, Congress will effectively be requiring the Administration to allow thousands of migrants per day into the country immediately without the necessary policies in place,” the White House Office of Management and Budget said in a statement in January, arguing against a Republican bill to end the public health emergency immediately.
Karine Jean-Pierre Gets Fact-checked on Debt Limit
Fox News’ Jacqui Heinrich fact-checked White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre in real time during Tuesday’s White House press briefing when Jean-Pierre repeated several false claims about the debt limit.
Jean-Pierre was briefing reporters ahead of a scheduled meeting between President Joe Biden and House and Senate Republicans on the debt limit. She stuck to her uncompromising tone of the past several weeks.
Heinrich began by asking Jean-Pierre why the White House claimed that it would not negotiate over the debt limit together with spending caps, when “half the country” wanted the two parties to have that conversation.
The press secretary did not answer directly, but repeated earlier claims that the bill passed by House Republicans two weeks ago included cuts to important programs and threatened a default on the debt.
Heinrich then countered by observing that the Republican bill did, in fact, raise the debt limit, and therefore avoided default. Jean-Pierre admitted that was so, but claimed that the House bill required cuts to programs helping seniors and schools.
Heinrich replied that there was nothing in the House Republican bill that specified any such cuts — that it did not have any appropriations in it — and the Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) had in fact ruled out the cuts that Jean-Pierre was claiming, erroneously, that Republicans had made.
She asked whether moderate Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) was also a “MAGA Republican extremist” — the term used by the White House to describe the opposition — for suggesting that a compromise was needed.
Jean-Pierre simply repeated her claim that Republicans’ debt limit bill, which raises the borrowing limit in exchange for modest spending cuts, was “extreme” and that Americans did not want their legislation.
She implied that the 2022 election — in which Republicans actually took over control of the House — gave Democrats a mandate to oppose spending cuts and to raise the debt ceiling without any conditions.