Jean-Pierre on Riley Death: ‘We Have Done the Work’ on Border and GOP Got in the Way

On Thursday’s broadcast of “CNN News Central,” White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre reacted to Republicans blaming President Joe Biden for Laken Riley’s death by saying that “We have done the work to make sure we’re dealing with a broken immigration system. The Republicans have gotten in the way.”

Co-host John Berman asked, “One of the things that some Americans are focused on are crimes that are allegedly being committed by migrants who are in the country illegally. There was the death of Laken Riley in Georgia. There’s been an arrest made there. Republicans are directly blaming President Biden for this. Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) said, These deaths are ‘on him.‘ What’s the White House response to that?”

Jean-Pierre responded, “So, first of all, I want to offer our condolences to the family of Laken. This is a horrific, horrific loss for any family. And obviously, … whoever is found guilty, we need to make sure that that happens. And, obviously, we don’t want to see anything happen like that again.”

She continued, “But here’s the thing: We have done the work to make sure we’re dealing with a broken immigration system. The Republicans have gotten in the way. They have gotten in the way, and that’s what we continue to see over and over and over again. And so, look, this is a serious matter. That’s why the President’s going to the border. The President was at the border a year ago in El Paso, visiting the border back in January 2023. He put [forward] a comprehensive immigration policy on day one. This really — the folks who are getting in the way here are Republicans. They are getting in the way. And they are doing it because of what Donald Trump is telling them to do for their own — for his own political gain, and so, this is where we are right now. So, the President’s going to take it directly to the American people. He’s going to hear from people who are directly impacted by what’s happening with this broken immigration system. But the President is not going to stop. He’s not going to stop, because this is not about politics, it’s about the American people and what they want to see coming out of Washington, D.C.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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