McCain called Harris a “moron” during the June 11 airing of the talk show amid the continuing fallout surrounding the vice president’s controversial two-day trip to Guatemala and Mexico, prompting some users on social media to call for McCain’s firing.
A mission to Guatemala and Mexico as a part of diplomatic efforts to stem migration from Central America to the U.S., Harris’ first overseas trip since taking office comes after President Joe Biden appointed her in March to handle the issues related to the influx of migrants.
In Guatemala last week, Harris warned citizens not to make the journey to the border to enter the United States. “Do not come. The United States will continue to enforce our laws and secure our border. There are legal methods by which migration can and should occur, but we, as one of our priorities, will discourage illegal immigration. And I believe if you come to our border you will be turned back.”
Harris received backlash from both sides of the aisle for those comments and her remarks during an interview with NBC News anchor Lester Holt. When Holt grilled Harris on Tuesday, June 8, about why she hasn’t visited the southern border to see the crisis Americans are witnessing with their own eyes, Harris deflected, saying, “And I haven’t been to Europe,” a comment that sparked widespread criticism from conservatives.
McCain Ernst on Friday: “Vice President Harris was in Guatemala this week telling people seeking asylum in the U.S. not to come, warning that they will be sent back. She is also taking heat for not visiting our own border yet, saying she’ll go at some point. Even some fellow Democrats think that she’s handling the crisis wrong. I thought she sounded like a moron when she was talking to Lester Holt and her nervous laugh is making me nervous that she doesn’t know what she’s doing.”
The Iowa Republican Ernst didn’t directly acknowledge McCain’s harsh jab at Harris, but she called the situation at the border a “humanitarian crisis.” She continued, “We do need to make sure that immigrants are not flowing up through Mexico to the southern border, without going through the proper processes. And in the past administration, we did have policies put into place where if they were seeking asylum from another country, they could apply within their home countries for that asylum in the United States.”
Speaking directly about Harris, Ernst said, “Vice President Harris, I hope that she does visit the southern border very, very soon. This is imperative and I think the longer she waits the harder it is for her to explain why she hasn’t gone to view this crisis herself, and form her own opinions about what’s going on. So I would just encourage her to do it very, very soon.”
On social media, some people — perhaps unfamiliar with the freewheeling format of the show — were aghast at ABC allowing McCain to make disparaging comments about the sitting vice president. “And your company still continues to allow her on your network!!!!” a user exclaimed, seemingly unaware that political figures always have been a fair target for harsh criticism on “The View.”
Another added, @abc @theview Plz let @MeghanMcCain know that she is the ultimate MORON and not our @VP…show her the door!!! Sick of @MeghanMcCain
Another viewer indicated they may stopped watching the program until McCain is fired. “After not watching the show for a while, I decided to tune in this morning. Only to hear Meghan McCain refer to the first female Vice President in our nations history as, “a moron”. Goodbye The View. At least until you fire Meghan McCain. Dissenting views isn’t that.”
Another user laid out several options: “Suspend or fire.”
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki responded to the criticism about Harris’ border comments on Tuesday, saying, “We’re not taking advice” from the Republicans who are offering criticism considering “they were all sitting there” while the initial border crisis began.