Texas Gov. Rick Perry and ABC News' Martha Raddatz clashed Sunday over the Obama administration's handling of the recent surge of underage illegal immigrants flooding the border between the U.S. and Mexico.
Perry said before his Sunday appearance on “This Week” that the White House's apparent lack of strategy shows that it's either woefully incompetent or it's conspiring to create a crisis, clearly a rhetorical device to emphasize the administration's underwhelming response to an increasingly serious problem.
But this point was apparently lost on ABC’s Raddatz, who decided between moments of interrupting Perry to question his supposed claim that the White House has plotted a border crisis.
She didn't want to talk about the actual border crisis or the Obama administration's lack of a coherent response. She wanted to parse the governor's words from a separate interview with Fox News. Because that's what a very serious reporter does.
“Governor, do you really believe there's some sort of conspiracy to get people into the United States by the federal government, by the Obama administration?” she asked.
“When I have — when I have written a letter that is dated May of 2012, and I have yet to have a response from this administration, I will tell you they either are inept or don’t care, and that is my position,” he replied.
“We have been bringing to the attention of President Obama and his administration since 2010 — he received a letter from me on the tarmac. He sends — I have to believe that when you do not respond in any way, that you are either inept, or you have some ulterior motive of which you are functioning from,” he added. “So the issue is, this president understands now that we have a huge problem on our southern border. We have to deal with it.”
He concluded: “Unless we secure our southern border, this is going to continue to be a massive amount of individuals that are coming to the United States. And, frankly, we don’t have a place to house them as it is. And if we have a major event, a hurricane that comes in to the Gulf Coast, I don’t have a place to be housing people who are displaced.”