White House dismisses visiting southern border as ‘political stunt’ for Republicans

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre dismissed politicians making trips to the U.S.-Mexico border as a “political stunt” Tuesday.

Jean-Pierre made the statement in response to questions about House minority leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., making an appearance at the border on Tuesday. President Biden has yet to visit the southern border nearly two years into his presidency as the country wrestles with an unprecedented border crisis.

“I’ve heard that Kevin McCarthy is at the border, and the question we have for Kevin McCarthy–who’s soon to be Speaker McCarthy–is, what is his plan? What is he doing to help the situation that we’re seeing?” Jean-Pierre began. “He goes down there, and he does a political stunt like many Republicans do, but he is not actually putting forth a plan.”

“McCarthy has no plan. The Republican Party has no plan. They do nothing except political stunts,” she continued.

TEXAS BORDER PATROL STOPS WRONG-WAY DRIVER DURING HUMAN SMUGGLING ATTEMPT; SUSPECT ESCAPES

White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre tells reporters to not shout questions during a briefing with White House chief medical advisor Dr. Anthony Fauci and COVID-19 Response Coordinator Dr. Ashish Jha during a briefing on COVID-19 at the White House on Nov. 22, 2022, in Washington, D.C.
(Win McNamee/Getty Images)

The U.S. has seen record levels of illegal immigration throughout the Biden administration. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) reported 230,000 border encounters in October alone, an all-time monthly record that broke the previous record set in September.

House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy of California speaks at an election event, Nov. 9, 2022, in Washington.
(AP Photo/Alex Brandon, File)

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September data revealed that fiscal year 2022 ended with 2,378,944 migrant encounters, the highest ever recorded in a fiscal year. That figure does not include the 599,000 known “gotaways” that CBP sources told Fox News evaded capture over the same period.

The Biden administration has repeatedly sought to dismiss border surges as a yearly pattern. While the southern border has seen a pattern of increases in migration each spring, the surges in both 2021 and 2022 far outpaced previous years, and that pace only escalated throughout the year.

Migrants stream across the Texas border.
(Fox News)

Vice President Harris, who Biden tapped to lead the administration’s effort to address border crisis, has argued the border is “closed,” telling migrants firmly, “Do not come,” last year.

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Nevertheless, many of the migrants Fox News spoke to earlier in November described the border as “abierta,” or “open.” Some of the migrants also praised Biden personally.