Just 60-some days into office, President Joe Biden faces a major crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border.
But the president decided on Wednesday that he wasn't going to handle the problem, instead handing it off to his vice president, Kamala Harris.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) on Thursday blasted that decision, saying the crisis is the "biggest political mess" out there.
"My reaction to that appointment is, is, wow, Joe Biden really doesn't like Kamala Harris," Cruz said on Fox News' "America's Newsroom."
"This border crisis is the biggest political mess Joe Biden has," said Cruz. "It threatens to derail the entire administration. So what does he do? He looks to his vice president and says, 'You take it. It's your problem now.' And listen, unfortunately, she is not going to be able to solve this crisis. Why? Because they've created this crisis because of their political partisan commitments that they can't back away from."
Biden on Thursday said in his first press conference as president that foreigners swarm the border every spring, so this is no different from past years. But Cruz offered his own theory on why the crisis is occurring.
"So why are we having this crisis at the border?" Cruz asked. "Because when Joe Biden got elected, the first thing he did was stop construction of the border wall. He reinstituted 'catch and release,' the failed policy, so that now when we detain illegal immigrants, we let them go.
"We give them a court date sometime in the future, and many of them never show up, and he ended the 'Remain in Mexico' policy, which was this incredibly successful foreign policy accomplishment where the Trump administration had negotiated with Mexico that illegal immigrants from Central America would remain in Mexico while their asylum proceedings were moving forward. All of those had produced real success."
Biden used an executive order in his first days in office to end former President Trump's Migrant Protection Protocols, which kept foreigners who tried to enter the U.S. illegally in camps in Mexico while they awaited hearings. Instead, Biden returned to a "catch-and-release" policy in which illegal aliens are allowed to enter the U.S.
Most recently, reports have emerged that because so many foreigners are swarming the border, some are being released into the U.S. without scheduled hearings.
Earlier this week, Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador blamed Biden for the ongoing crisis at the U.S.-Mexico border, saying his public statements prompted Central Americans to try to get into the United States.
"Expectations were created that with the government of President Biden there would be a better treatment of migrants," Lopez Obrador said Wednesday at a press conference. "And this has caused Central American migrants, and also [people] from our country wanting to cross the border, thinking that it is easier to do so."
Cruz also blamed Democrats, who have vilified the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency.
"But because the Democrats campaigned on saying ICE is evil, securing the border is wrong because the Democrats support open borders," the Texas senator said. "Kamala Harris doesn't have anything to do other than go down there and let everybody go. I mean, that's the only option that is consistent with the political promises she's made, and I'll tell you, representing the state of Texas, we are seeing illegal immigrants being released in Harlingen, Texas.
"The illegal immigrants they're releasing are testing positive for COVID-19 at a seven times higher rate than the U.S. population. It is a humanitarian crisis, it's a public health crisis, and it's a national security crisis."