Biden intends to make his first visit to US-Mexico border

Jan 3, 2023, 10:13 PM | Updated: Jan 5, 2023, 11:06 am
President Joe Biden talks with reporters outside White House in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2023...

President Joe Biden talks with reporters outside White House in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 4, 2023. Biden was returning from a trip to Kentucky to visit a notoriously dilapidated bridge connecting Ohio and Kentucky to promote his administration's infrastructure law. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

(AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

HEBRON, Ky. (AP) — President Joe Biden intends to visit the U.S.-Mexico border — his first trip there since taking office — in connection with his meeting next week in Mexico City with the leaders of Mexico and Canada.

“That’s my intention, we’re working out the details now,” Biden told reporters Wednesday during a trip to Kentucky.

Biden said upon his return to the White House that he hoped to see “what’s going on” at the border and also planned to make remarks about border security on Thursday.

There have been large increases in the number of migrants at the border even as a U.S. public health law remains in place that allows American authorities to turn away many people seeking asylum in the United States. Republican leaders have criticized the president for policies that they say are ineffective on border security and they have questioned why he has not made a trip there yet.

The increased focus from Biden on the border also comes as the president prepares for a 2024 reelection bid. His sole declared potential rival, Donald Trump, rose to the top of the GOP ranks by animating the party’s base voters with his hardline stances on immigration.

But there was some praise Wednesday after the news.

“I’m pleased President Biden will finally visit our southern border – which has been completely surrendered to the cartels, smugglers, and human traffickers,” tweeted Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., who has been a critic of administration policies.

Among the complaints on border security by Republicans is the amount of fentanyl coming into the U.S. via Mexico. A 2022 report from a bipartisan federal commission found that fentanyl and similar drugs are being made mostly in labs in Mexico from chemicals shipped primarily from China.

And fentanyl and other lab-produced synthetic opioids now are driving an overdose crisis deadlier than any the U.S. has ever seen. But drug control advocates and experts say an anti-drug policy that relies on tighter border security is dangerous and likely futile. The drugs are too easy to move in small, hard-to-detect quantities.

Drug trafficking and immigration are expected to be among the top talking points at the summit Monday and Tuesday when Biden and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau are hosted by Mexico President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador.

Early in his presidency, Biden put Vice President Kamala Harris in charge of the White House effort to tackle the migration challenge by working with Central American nations to address central causes of the problem. She visited El Paso, Texas, in June 2021 and was criticized for choosing a location too far from the epicenter of border crossings that are straining federal resources. The number of migrants crossing the border has only risen.

For now, the Supreme Court has kept in place Trump-era restrictions, often known as Title 42 in reference to a 1944 public health law, after Biden acted to end them and Republicans sued in response. Title 42 was invoked to prevent the spread of COVID-19, but there has always been criticism that the restrictions were used as a pretext by Trump to seal off the border.

Biden has yet to lay out any systemic changes to manage an expected increase of migrants should the health restrictions end. And the president is limited in what he can do without immigration law changes. But in Congress, a bipartisan immigration bill was buried shortly before Republicans assumed control of the House.

Biden made his comment about the upcoming border visit during a stop in Kentucky at a highway bridge that is to receive federal dollars under the bipartisan infrastructure law.

Trump visited the U.S. side of the border as president several times, including one trip to McAllen, Texas, where he claimed Mexico would pay for the border wall.

American taxpayers ended up covering the costs. Mexican leaders had flatly rejected the idea when Trump pressed them early on. “NO,” Enrique Peña Nieto, then Mexico’s president, tweeted in May 2018. “Mexico will NEVER pay for a wall. Not now, not ever. Sincerely, Mexico (all of us).”

___

Long reported from Washington.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Associated Press

Kansas City police find body in man’s car after towing it

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Family members and a forensic expert are questioning why Kansas City police didn’t find a man’s body in the cargo area of his own SUV until after they towed it to a Missouri police station earlier this month. Adam “A.J.” Blackstock Jr.’s death is being investigated as a homicide, according […]
2 days ago
FILE - Annie Wersching arrives at the FOX Winter All-Star Party in Pasadena, Calif., on Jan. 11, 20...
Associated Press

’24,’ ‘Runaways’ actor Annie Wersching has died at 45

Actor Annie Wersching, best known for playing FBI agent Renee Walker in the series “24” and providing the voice for Tess in the video game “The Last of Us,” has died. She was 45. Wersching passed away Sunday morning in Los Angeles following a battle with cancer, her publicist told The Associated Press. The type […]
2 days ago
Associated Press

Baby girl found abandoned in Florida an hour after birth

MULBERRY, Fla. (AP) — Florida authorities found a newborn girl wrapped in a blanket and still attached to a placenta on a hill outside a trailer park early Saturday morning. Polk County deputies responding to a call about a baby crying outside near Mulberry, east of Tampa, found the girl about an hour after she […]
2 days ago
A group of demonstrators protest outside a police precinct in response to the death of Tyre Nichols...
Associated Press

Pastor prays for peace after brutal beating of Tyre Nichols

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — The pastor at the Memphis church where Tyre Nichols ‘ family spoke from the pulpit urging peace after his brutal killing reiterated the call for calm Sunday following the release of video showing the fatal beating by police. Cities nationwide have braced for protests after body camera footage was released Friday […]
2 days ago
The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, center, is welcomed by U.S. amb...
Associated Press

US urges donors to give far more as Somalia faces famine

MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) — The first U.S. Cabinet member to visit Somalia since 2015 urged the world’s distracted donors Sunday to give immediate help to a country facing deadly famine, which she calls “the ultimate failure of the international community.” The U.S. ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, heard perhaps the starkest warning yet […]
2 days ago
Elon Musk departs the Phillip Burton Federal Building and United States Court House in San Francisc...
Associated Press

Elon Musk’s mysterious ways on display in Tesla tweet trial

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Elon Musk’s enigmatic personality and unconventional tactics are emerging as key exhibits in a trial revolving around one of his most polarizing pursuits — tweeting. The trial, centered on a pair of tweets announcing Musk had obtained the money to take Tesla private in 2018, reeled the 51-year-old billionaire into a […]
2 days ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Biden intends to make his first visit to US-Mexico border