During the Democratic primary debate in September, Joe Biden, when asked by Univision’s Jorge Ramos why Latinos should trust him, replied, “What Latinos should look at is comparing [Trump] to [Obama] is outrageous. Number one, we didn’t lock up people up in cages, we didn’t separate families… we didn’t do all of those things.”
It was a complete lie, but none of the moderators called him out on it. No one in the media dared point out that it was the Obama-Biden administration that actually built the cages because they wanted to blame it all on Trump
But, on Friday, Jorge Ramos finally called Biden out in a new interview. “At the debate in Houston, you said that during the Obama-Biden administration, ‘We didn’t lock people in cages,’ but you actually did,” he told the former vice president, showing him a picture to prove it.
Suddenly being faced with evidence of lie, Biden immediately started rationalizing. “What happened was all the unaccompanied children were coming across the border,” he said. “We tried to get them out, we kept them safe, and get them out of the detention center… run by Homeland Security and get them into communities as quickly as we can.”
Biden explains to Jorge Ramos why the Obama administration put kids in cages: "We kept them safe… They came unaccompanied. Unaccompanied." pic.twitter.com/r6KWD6IDiB
— Eddie Zipperer (@EddieZipperer) February 15, 2020
So, Biden went from claiming he didn’t put kids in cages to saying the cages were there to keep the kids safe. It’s funny how one’s tune changes when actually challenged with the facts. But that didn’t stop Biden from trying to say the situations were completely different.
“You know you’re not telling the truth here about the comparison of the two things,” Biden replied. “Look how quickly we got them out and got them back to families, look at how … we sought the relatives here, we sought to get them into safe communities. We sought to get them out of the control of Homeland Security to get them safe.”
Get them safe? The Washington Post “The Obama administration failed to protect thousands of Central American children who have flooded across the U.S. border since 2011, leaving them vulnerable to traffickers and to abuses at the hands of government-approved caretakers.” Under Obama and Biden, the Office of Refugee Resettlement, a division of the HHS Department, “failed to do proper background checks of adults who claimed the children, allowed sponsors to take custody of multiple unrelated children, and regularly placed children in homes without visiting the locations.”
So, Biden’s excused doesn’t hold water. The fact is, he and Obama didn’t keep immigrant children safe, they put countless kids in the hands of sex traffickers. The Trump administration, however, has been aggressively trying to protect immigrant kids from traffickers.
I’ll give Jorge Ramos some credit for finally challenging Biden on his lie that he and Obama didn’t put kids in cages. If only he pointed out the inconvenient truth that Obama and Biden didn’t always get kids to their families safely.
I can’t let Biden off the hook for lying either. Biden had to know the Obama administration was building these cages and putting kids in them, yet he lied repeatedly.
Matt Margolis is the author of Trumping Obama: How President Trump Saved Us From Barack Obama’s Legacy and the bestselling book The Worst President in History: The Legacy of Barack Obama. You can follow Matt on Twitter @MattMargolis