Politics

Kamala Harris won't engage on Gaza, TikTok and the Texas border

In a carefully crafted interview broadcast on ABC News Vice President Kamala Harris on Sunday declined to provide details on how the Biden administration would respond if Israel invades the city of Rafah in southern Gaza, if Congress continued to refuse to pass border security legislation and if TikTok's Chinese parent company refused to sell the service.

Ms. Harris reiterated the administration's position previously indicated position that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu should not order an invasion of Rafah, where more than a million people have sought refuge from Israeli aerial bombardments and ground operations in the rest of Gaza.

“We have made it clear in multiple conversations and in every way that any major military operation in Rafah would be a grave mistake,” she said. “Let me tell you something. I've studied the maps. There's nowhere for these people to go, and we have about 1.5 million people in Rafah who are there because they were told said to go for it, for the most part.

But she did not respond when the interviewer, Rachel Scott, asked if there would be “consequences” if Israel invaded Rafah anyway. Ms. Scott noted that Mr. Netanyahu had shown no inclination follow the advice of the United States.

“Well, we're going to take it step by step, but we've been very clear about our view on whether this should happen or not,” Ms. Harris said, adding, after Ms. Scott repeated the same thing. question: “I’m not excluding anything. »

When asked about TikTok – which, under the legislation that passed the House this month and awaits a Senate vote, would be prohibited in the United States, unless the service's Chinese owner agrees to sell it — she said the administration didn't want to ban it but simply had “national security concerns about the owner,” ByteDance.

“We have no plans to ban TikTok,” she said. “In fact, what it serves is an income generator for many people, what it does in terms of allowing people to share information freely and in a way that allows people to “Having a speech is very important.”

But she did not say that Mr. Biden would veto the bill if it passed the Senate.

On immigration, Ms. Scott showed video of migrants clashing with Texas National Guard troops along the border in El Paso and asked if that signaled to Americans “that the border is secure.”

“We are very clear, and I think most Americans are very clear, that we have a broken immigration system and we have to fix it,” Harris said, criticizing Senate Republicans in the face of pressure. of former President Donald J. Atout, retreating of a bipartisan agreement on border security that some of their members had negotiated.

“They are refusing to put the bill to a vote, and in large part because we know the former president would rather run on an issue than solve it,” she said.

Asked about the possibility of executive action, which Republicans in Congress are calling for, she indicated that it was an option on the table, but said: “That does not obviate the fact that the real solution will be when Congress acts . »

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