Biden on Border: "Nothing Has Changed" | Video | RealClearPolitics

Biden on Border: "Nothing Has Changed"

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President Biden comments on the perception among illegal immigrants that the border into the U.S. is open now that he is president during his first formal press conference Thursday afternoon.

"The truth of the matter is, nothing has changed. As many people came, 28% increase in children to the border in my administration, 31% in the last year in 2019 before the pandemic in the trump administration," he said. "It happens every single solitary year."


YAMICHE ALCINDOR: Mr. President. You said over and over again that immigrants shouldn't come to this country right now, this isn't the time to come. That message is not being perceived. Instead, the perception of you that got you elected as a moral, decent man is the reason why a lot of immigrants are coming to the country and entrusting you with unaccompanied minors. How do you resolve that tension? And how are you choosing which families can stay and which can go, given the fact even though with title 42, there are families staying? And there a timeline when we won't be seeing these overcrowded facilities run by CPB when it comes to unaccompanied minors?

PRESIDENT JOE BIDEN: Look, I guess I should be flattered people are coming because I'm the nice guy. That's the reason why it's happening, that I'm a decent man or however it's phrased, that's why they're coming because, you know, Biden is a good guy.

The truth of the matter is, nothing has changed. As many people came, 28% increase in children to the border in my administration, 31% in the last year in 2019 before the pandemic in the trump administration. It happens every single solitary year. There is a significant increase in the number of people coming to the border in the winter months of January, February, March.

It happens every year. In addition to that, there is -- and by the way, does anybody suggest that there was a 31% increase under trump because he was a nice guy and he was doing good things at the border? That's not the reason they're coming. The reason they're coming is that it's the time they can travel with the least likelihood of dying on the way because of the heat in the desert, number one. Number two, they're coming because of the circumstances in the country.

The way to deal with this problem -- and I started to deal with it back when I was united states senator -- I mean vice president for putting together a bipartisan plan for over $700 million to do root causes of why people are leaving.

What did Trump do? He eliminated that funding. He didn't use it. He didn't do it. And in addition to that, what he did, he dismantled all of the elements that exist to deal with what had been a problem and has been continuing to be a problem for a long time. He, in fact, shut down the number of beds available. He did not fund AHHS to get people to get the chirp out of those border patrol facilities where they should not be. They're not supposed more than a few days, a little while. But he dismantled all of that.

What we're doing now is attempting to rebuild, rebuild the system that can accommodate what is happening today and I would like to think it's because I'm a nice guy but it's not. It's because of what's happening every year. Let me say one other thing on this, if you take a look at the number of people coming, the vast majority -- the overwhelming majority of people coming to the border across it are being sent back. Are being sent back. Thousands, tens of thousands of people who are over 18 years of age, and single people, one at a time coming, had been sent back, sent home.
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