Speaker Johnson Shuts Down Biden’s ‘Election Year Gimmicks’ Over Border Actions

By Victor Winston, updated on February 22, 2024

House Speaker Mike Johnson openly criticized President Joe Biden's border management strategies in the heated run-up to the election.

House Speaker Mike Johnson accuses President Joe Biden of leveraging executive powers as an electoral strategy rather than effectively addressing the U.S.-Mexico border crisis.

A Clash of Titans Over Border Policy

House Speaker Mike Johnson, representing Louisiana, has not minced words in his critique of President Biden’s reported contemplation of executive actions aimed at the U.S.-Mexico border crisis. The president is considering measures to limit asylum claims and strengthen screenings—moves that Johnson labels as last-minute ploys in an election year.

Johnson’s dissatisfaction stems from his belief that President Biden has long had the tools to address border security but has chosen not to employ them until facing reelection pressures.

In a detailed rebuke, Johnson pointed to the president's potential use of Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which allows the executive to bar entry to any foreigner deemed detrimental to U.S. interests.

These reports also underscore just how brazenly and intentionally President Biden misled the public when he claimed he had done everything in his power to secure the border. Specifically, the President’s alleged desire to invoke Section 212(f) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, which the White House dismissed using for months, is particularly telling.

In December, Johnson communicated with the president via a letter, proposing multiple strategies to strengthen border security. He recommended ending the catch-and-release approach, reactivating asylum cooperation agreements, bringing back the "Remain in Mexico" policy, and stopping abuses of the parole system. Johnson believes these steps are crucial for a genuine commitment to securing the border.

White House's Rebuttal: Stance or Strategy?

White House spokesman Andrew Bates was quick to counter Johnson's criticisms, painting them as politically motivated. Bates accused Johnson of obstructing vital bipartisan border security legislation, suggesting that Johnson's actions were not in the best interest of American families but rather aligned with political objectives.

Bates further criticized Johnson and House Republicans for their failure to support substantive border security legislation when presented. He suggested that their refusal, guided by concerns voiced by Donald Trump that enhanced security would undercut his campaign narrative, demonstrated a lack of genuine commitment to border security.

The contention between Johnson and the Biden administration unfolds as the president gears up for his reelection campaign, signaling that immigration and border security are likely to be central issues. The Senate's recent failure to pass an immigration deal that bore similarities to the actions now being considered by Biden adds another layer of complexity to the ongoing debate.

The Debate Intensifies Amid Election Preparations

Johnson’s accusations and the White House's rebuttal represent the starkly contrasting perspectives on how best to manage the U.S.-Mexico border crisis. While Johnson accuses Biden of using executive power as an electoral tactic without genuinely addressing the problem, the White House condemns Johnson's political motivations and his opposition to bipartisan solutions.

“Americans have lost faith in this President and won’t be fooled by election year gimmicks that don’t secure the border. Nor will they forget that the President created this catastrophe and, until now, has refused to use his executive power to fix it,” said Mike Johnson, emphasizing the perceived negligence and political maneuvering by the administration.


The clash over border security strategies between House Speaker Mike Johnson and President Joe Biden highlights wider national debates on immigration, security, and governance. With the election approaching, these topics are set to remain at the forefront of discussion, influencing the political scene and voter opinions. This conflict exemplifies the divided state of American politics, particularly on immigration issues. Johnson calls for tough actions and blames Biden for lack of progress, whereas the White House supports the President's policies and accuses the opposition of engaging in political games.

About Victor Winston

Victor is a freelance writer and researcher who focuses on national politics, geopolitics, and economics.

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