"I hate it": Trump and lawmakers react to tragic photo of migrant father and daughter – CBS News

A haunting image that shows the danger so many are willing to face to try and enter the U.S., has gone viral. Now, officials are pointing blame.

Oscar Alberto Martinez Ramirez and his almost 2-year-old daughter Valeria are seen face down in south Texas’ Rio Grande. The child’s arm is still holding on to her father’s neck after they both drowned trying to cross into the country. As the bodies were taken away, Tania Ramirez, the wife can be heard sobbing. 

Oscar’s mother in El Salvador broke down when she heard the news. She said the last message she got from her son was Saturday, when he told her he loved her.

ADDITION Mexico US Border Migrant Deaths

The bodies of a Salvadoran migrant and his nearly 2-year-old daughter 

Julia Le Duc / AP


The final act of desperation came after weeks of trying to seek asylum at the U.S. consulate in Mexico. But the family said they couldn’t get anyone to talk to them. 

The image brought immediate comparisons to Aylan Kurdi, the 3-year-old Syrian refugee who drowned just outside Turkey during Europe’s refugee crisis in 2015. 

President Trump reacted to the photo, saying “I hate it,” but quickly blamed the Democrats in Congress for not changing the asylum policy that he said has encouraged the migrant surge at the border.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer shot back. “These are not drug dealers or vagrants or criminals. They are people simply fleeing a horrible situation in their home country,” he said.
 
The Senate on Wednesday passed a $4.6 billion humanitarian aid package for the border. After rejecting a House measure, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she wouldn’t take up the Senate bill, saying there needs to be negotiations.
 
The political posturing in Washington, D.C., doesn’t change the reality at the border.

“I don’t know how the government will be able to fix those systemic problems in one day’s time,” said Elora Mukherjee, an attorney who recently toured Customs and Border Protection’s Clint facility, where hundreds of migrant children are being held. 

CBP has downplayed her description of conditions being unsanitary when she visited the facility last week. Wednesday, CBP officials allowed reporters into the facility for a tour. There are 117 children in there right now. But they showed CBS News food, clothing and toiletry supplies. But it was a guided tour and CBS News could not talk to any of the children.

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