Keisha Lance Bottoms, senior advisor to the president for public engagement, was pressed on why President Biden didn’t visit the border during his visit to Arizona.
CBS “Face the Nation” host Margaret Brennan asked Bottoms why Biden didn’t make the trip.
“You have to remember, Margaret, when the president travels, it’s not like you or I jumping on an airplane, then getting off and going to our destination. Everything comes to a halt. So all of these things are in consideration for the president. Is that the best use of resources? All of the resources that will be diverted on the ground when the president makes a visit,” Bottoms responded.
Brennan pressed further and asked if that was why he didn’t go.
“I can’t speak to why he has or has not gone, I’m just speaking to the fact that it’s a bit more disruptive for the president of the United States to travel than you or I,” Bottoms said.
Biden previously said there were more “important things” going on in response to a question about why he wasn’t planning to visit the border. Biden has taken 59 trips to Delaware and has made eight stops for ice cream.
Bottoms said that president has “continued to lean in” on immigration issues and that immigration “was a problem that he did not create.”
Brennan also asked the president’s adviser what the administration was doing to urge migrants not to come.
“Well, the administration has been working for months, planning for the end of Title 42. And you have to remember, Margaret, these aren’t people who are attempting to illegally cross the border. These are people who are presenting themselves, asking that they be processed in accordance with the laws of the United States,” Bottoms responded.
Brennan asked again and added that what Title 42 allowed for was “expelling without the guarantee of an asylum hearing.”
“Well, what the White House has done, has said very publicly, that we want people to avail themselves of a lawful process. What we are seeing happening is many people are taking advantage of the fact that Title 42 may go away this week. We’ve seen many people exploiting migrants, saying, come now or you lose your ability to come at all. And that is simply not the case. Again, this is not just the issue we’re facing in the United States. This is a global issue, so the president has been working very closely with our partners across the global to address this global issue,” Bottoms said.
Bottoms also said the White House needed to work with Congress to achieve comprehensive immigration as Title 42 is set to expire on Wednesday, Dec. 21.
During a press conference on Friday, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said Biden has worked hard to deal with the crisis at the border.