Since she was saddled with a leading role in addressing the immigration crisis earlier this year, Vice President Kamala Harris has faced fierce criticism from the right over her reluctance to personally visit the U.S.-Mexico border.
After a widely disparaged trip to Guatemala and Mexico earlier this month, Harris returned to backlash from both sides of the aisle as progressives denounced her message urging migrants not to make the journey to the U.S.
“Such a disappointment”
For her part, actress America Ferrera sounded off during an appearance on ABC’s The View on Thursday, declaring that she thought it was “cruel” of the vice president to discourage immigrants from seeking entry into America.
Furthermore, she called the remarks “a slap in the face” to Latinos who voted her into office in November.
The actress said she spent “many hours” talking to arriving immigrants at the border about the “life-threatening” situations they fled.
“For me, what she said is essentially telling a drowning person to stop flailing for their life, to not do the one thing that might save them or their child,” Ferrera added.
Calling the recent comments “such a disappointment,” she said that the Biden administration “promised compassion” and “promised that we were going to bring humanity back into our country’s governance and including in our immigration policy.”
“You will be turned back”
The remarks that attracted the most leftist opposition came as the vice president stood beside the Guatemalan president and warned would-be immigrants: “Do not come. Do not come. The United States will continue to enforce our laws and secure our borders. If you come to our border, you will be turned back.”
Another outspoken critic of the position was U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), who took her opprobrium even further than Ferrera.
“This is disappointing to see,” the New York Democrat tweeted. “First, seeking asylum in any US border is a 100% legal method of arrival. Second, the US spent decades contributing to regime change and destabilization in Latin America. We can’t help set someone’s house on fire and then blame them for fleeing.”
It increasingly appears that the Biden administration faces a no-win situation in regard to the ongoing spike in illegal immigration.
Biden entered office by seeking to reverse as many of his predecessor’s immigration and border policies as possible — and now the Democratic base is up in arms because his administration is trying to regain some control over what has clearly become a crisis.