Ocasio-Cortez: Harris telling migrants 'do not come' to US is 'disappointing to see'

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezHillary Clinton backs Shontel Brown in Ohio congressional race Ocasio-Cortez, Gillibrand and Moulton call for more high-speed rail funding in infrastructure package Pelosi picks Democrats for special panel tackling inequality MORE (D-N.Y.) slammed Vice President Harris for imploring migrants traveling from Central America to the United States not to make the oftentimes dangerous journey. 

"I want to emphasize that the goal of our work is to help Guatemalans find hope at home. At the same time I want to be clear to folks in this region who are thinking about making that dangerous trek to the United States-Mexico border: Do not come, do not come," Harris said Monday at a press conference during her first foreign trip.

A few hours later, Ocasio-Cortez called the vice president's messaging to migrants "disappointing to see." 


"First, seeking asylum at any US border is a 100% legal method of arrival," the progressive lawmaker wrote in a tweet Monday evening. "Second, the US spent decades contributing to regime change and destabilization in Latin America. We can’t help set someone’s house on fire and then blame them for fleeing." 

Harris is in Central America this week meeting with local leaders to ascertain the root causes of migration. She had been tapped by President BidenJoe BidenObama: Ensuring democracy 'continues to work effectively' keeps me 'up at night' New Jersey landlords prohibited from asking potential tenants about criminal records Overnight Defense: Pentagon pulling some air defense assets from Middle East | Dems introduce resolution apologizing to LGBT community for discrimination | White House denies pausing military aid package to Ukraine MORE to serve as the point person in his administration on all things immigration. 


In March, Biden made a similar request to migrants, many of whom have said they are coming to the U.S. in hopes of gaining entry more easily under the Biden administration.

"Yes, I can say quite clearly: Don't come over," Biden said during an interview with ABC News. "Don't leave your town or city or community,"

Ocasio-Cortez has in recent months been critical of the Biden administration for how it has dealt with and housed unaccompanied minors who have crossed into the United States illegally.

The U.S. is partly to blame for the corruption, crime and poverty plaguing many countries in the Southern Triangle, she argued.

"It would be helpful if the US would finally acknowledge its contributions to destabilization and regime change in the region," Ocasio-Cortez wrote in another tweet. "Doing so can help us change US foreign policy, trade policy, climate policy, & carceral border policy to address causes of mass displacement & migration."

In an interview with NBC News this week, Harris addressed critics who have said she is not paying enough attention to what is going on at the southern border. 

"I care about, listen, I care about what's happening at the border," Harris responded to a question from NBC's Lester Holt. "I'm in Guatemala because my focus is dealing with the root causes of migration. There may be some who think that that is not important, but it is my firm belief that if we care about what's happening at the border, we better care about the root causes and address them. And so that's what I'm doing."