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Harris called to task after skirting ‘suicide watch’ report to claim migrant children are ‘filled with optimism’

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Fox News’s Will Cain pushed back on Vice President Kamala Harris while hosting the network’s “Primetime” opinion program Friday over her claim that migrant children being held at U.S. detention facilities in Texas are “filled with optimism.”

After playing a clip of Harris making her comment during a press conference following her brief visit to a Border Patrol facility in El Paso, Cain cited a report by CBS News that said migrant children being held at nearby Ft. Bliss, a U.S. Army base, “are so miserable in their cages, some of them have been placed on suicide watch.”

“Federal officials became so concerned about migrant teens harming themselves that they banned pencils, pens, scissors, nail clippers, and regular toothbrushes inside tents housing hundreds of children, according to an internal document,” CBS News reported. “Workers at the site said they were even instructed to remove the metal nose clips from N95 masks.”

“That does not sound like ‘optimism,'” Cain said, noting that the report also said migrant teens are held for about 60 days in detention facilities before they are moved on.


(Credit: Fox News)
Stephen Miller, a former White House senior adviser in the Trump administration and founder of the America First Legal Foundation, responded to the report by noting that the Trump administration’s policy was quick repatriation of children back to families in their home countries, which he said “solved the unaccompanied minor crisis in a sustainable way.”

“That single act ended most child trafficking on our border,” Miller said, adding that the Biden administration — “over the objections of career” Homeland Security officials, “some of whom they’ve since terminated” — reversed that policy, as well as most others Trump put in place.

“They made a conscious, deliberate decision to end the repatriation policy, and instead, they have long-term housing followed by release to unknown sponsors, in many cases inside the United States,” Miller continued.

That makes it “open season on children in Latin America,” Miller continued, adding that the cartels are “advertising” in Central American countries that kids will be guaranteed entrance into the U.S.

“Desperate people make desperate decisions,” Miller added.

“I want to be very clear about something: This is not a case of Harris and Biden trying but failing to secure the border,” the former top adviser went on. “This is a case of Biden and Harris trying and succeeding in destroying the border. Only if you understand that can you understand everything else that is going on.”

As part of its overall border control strategy, the Trump administration negotiated agreements with Central American countries and Mexico, built more than 450 miles of new border wall, and implemented a “zero-tolerance” policy that saw the enforcement of existing laws regarding illegal crossings.

By January 2020, illegal crossings had fallen by 78 percent, and once-full migrant overflow detention facilities were empty and being shuttered.

“That’s a dramatic reduction,” Mark Morgan, then-acting Customs and Border Protection chief, said.

Later in his interview with Cain, Miller accused the Biden administration of simply not caring about the “collateral damage” to migrant kids that their policies are causing “because they’re zealots.”

“The reality is they were warned by career law enforcement throughout the transition that this would happen if they put catch-and-release into place,” Miller said of the current migrant crisis. “They just didn’t mind.”

Jon Dougherty

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