Former Obama Official Blames Central American Migration on ‘Climate Crisis’

By Melanie Arter | June 10, 2019 | 10:03am EDT
Open Society Foundation President and former Obama White House Political Affairs Director Patrick Gaspard (Screenshot)

( – Former Obama official Patrick Gaspard in a panel discussion on ABC’s “This Week with George Stephanopolous” blamed Central American migration on the “climate crisis.”

Gaspard, who is currently president of the Open Society Foundation and once served as Obama’s White House political affairs director, said President Donald Trump was “falsely hyping a deal that was struck some months ago that we know is probably insufficient to the challenge.”


“Let’s be clear about what’s really happening here. I know Americans through the news media are focused on Mexico and this challenge, but this story is really not about Mexico. It’s about migrants who are coming from Honduras, El Salvador and Guatemala, from the Northern Triangle, and they are a very different class of migrants than we saw in years past,” he said.



“You used to have lone Mexican men who would come, find work, send money back home. That’s not what you have now. You have whole families that are coming as a consequence of pressures of climate shifts in the Northern Triangle,” Gaspard said.

He said the president should be working with countries in that region to fight climate change.

“We have a five-year drought there now and precipitation that’s moving to other parts of the region. Any president of the U.S. should be working with Mexico and with that region to mitigate the climate crisis and the crisis also in some of the human rights oppressions that exist in those countries. We should be partnering with Mexico now, not making idle threats and lifting up deals that will do nothing to mitigate the crisis,” Gaspard said.



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