On Day 139, Vice President Kamala Harris reckoned with “Republican attacks” that her portfolio has something to do with the border.
Biden Ends Infrastructure Talks with GOP.
On Tuesday, President Joe Biden walked away from infrastructure talks with lead Senate Republican negotiator Shelley Moore Capito, turning instead to discussions with a new bipartisan group of ten Republican and ten Democrats senators, assembled in case talks between Biden and Capito fell apart.
The White House made clear that Biden is “pursuing multiple paths to get this done,” while Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said to reporters Tuesday that “it may well be that part of the bill that is passed will be bipartisan, and part of it will be in reconciliation, but we’re not going to sacrifice bigness and boldness.”
From an official statement by press secretary Jen Psaki:
[Biden] informed Senator Capito today that the latest offer from her group did not, in his view, meet the essential needs of our country to restore our roads and bridges, prepare us for our clean energy future, and create jobs. He offered his gratitude to her for her efforts and good faith conversations, but expressed his disappointment that, while he was willing to reduce his plan by more than $1 trillion, the Republican group had increased their proposed new investments by only $150 billion.
Root Causes Tour Arrives in Mexico.
Vice President Kamala Harris’ bilateral meeting with Mexican president Andrés Manuel López Obrador produced an announcement of plans to hold a high-level economic dialogue and cabinet-level security dialogue later in the year, invest $130 million in Mexican labor reform, launch youth empowerment programs, help U.S. and Mexican law enforcement share information on human trafficking and smuggling, strengthen “rural value chains such as cacao, coffee, and eco-tourism,” and help resolve disappearance cases in Mexico.
Facing criticism for not visiting the border and dismissing the push to do so, Harris told reporters after the meeting that she had “been to the border before and will go again,” but did not outline any specific plans. On the heels of that disastrous Lester Holt interview, the vice president’s team was reportedly “frustrated by what they perceive to be questioning driven by Republican attacks falsely painting her as the administration’s border czar, rather than focused on the root causes of migration.” That’s right, NBC Nightly News, best known for its “Republican attacks,” has attracted the ire of the White House for “falsely painting” Harris as the border czar.
In a strange case of mistaken identity, a woman thought to be “Maria Fernanda of Univision” stood up and gratuitously complimented Harris, mentioning that she had voted for Harris before asking what the VP would do for women “on both sides of the border.” While there is a Maria Fernanda Lopez of Univision—not in attendance—the woman asking the question was Maria Fernanda Reyes, who has no affiliation with the network. The president of Univision took to Twitter to clarify that “an individual which has no association with @Univision claimed to be a reporter for @UniNoticias in order to ask the @VP a question and to compliment @KamalaHarris. Let it be clear to everyone that Ms. Maria Fernanda Reyes is not part of this media organization.” The imposter, who is not a journalist but an entrepreneur and charity founder, was one of only five people called on by Harris press secretary Symone Sanders, while the actual correspondent sent by Univision was not able to ask a question.
Speaking Truth To Power in the Biden Era: A Tutorial.
Unlike the unfair, biased Lester Holt interrogation, Psaki on Tuesday engaged in what White House considers a productive exchange between the government and the press after Katie Rogers of the New York Times informed her that “Republicans and conservatives are, you know, going crazy on Twitter, sending pictures, sending videos of Harris’ interview with Lester Holt.”
Wow watch New York Slimes’ @katierogers opening her question by mocking conservatives.
Her and Psaki are repugnant pic.twitter.com/j3N9k4BEce
— Raheem J. Kassam (@RaheemKassam) June 8, 2021