Fact Check: Katie Britt Was Right About Trafficked 12-Year-Old as Dems Forget #MeToo

Fact Check: Katie Britt Was Right About Trafficked 12-Year-Old as Dems Forget #MeToo

I’ll admit, I’m confused about all the furor over Alabama GOP Sen. Katie Britt’s Republican rebuttal to the State of the Union address.

The criticisms of speech by the youngest Republican woman elected to the Senate ranged from the location of the speech — her kitchen table — to the wholesomeness of it, according to The Guardian.

Maybe I’m in the minority, but as a mom myself, Britt spoke to me. I found myself leaning forward involuntarily when she spoke to the camera about the price of groceries and the future of our children — issues that matter to me.

After an hour and a half of watching President Joe Biden rant like a drunk uncle after Thanksgiving dinner about the state of Ukraine, Cookie Monster, and how many fewer potato chips there are in a bag, it felt good to the soul to sit in the kitchen with someone who felt like a friend who knew what I was going through.

But regardless of her delivery, the biggest criticism Britt received wasn’t accurate at all.

While speaking about the border crisis, specifically the dangers of human trafficking, the 42-year-old senator recounted the story of a woman she had met.

“She had been sex trafficked by the cartels starting at age 12. She told me not just that she was raped every day, but how many times a day she was raped,” Britt said in her speech.

“The cartels put her on a mattress in a shoebox of a room, and they sent men through that door, over and over again, for hours and hours on end,” she recalled. “We wouldn’t be OK with this happening in a third-world country. This is the United States of America, and it’s past time we start acting like it.”

Britt used the harrowing tale to condemn the administration’s “lax immigration and border policies.”

Shortly after the speech, Former AP journalist Jonathan Katz revealed that the story Britt referenced was that of Karla Jacinto Romero, a prominent anti-trafficking activist who was victimized in Mexico in 2004 — nearly two decades before Biden took office.

In a TikTok video, Katz said, “This senator has gone around telling the story over and over again as if she was describing actions that took place on or even near the U.S. border during Joe Biden’s presidency,” adding, “It goes beyond misleading,” according to the U.K.’s Daily Mail.

But Katz himself admitted in the video that everything Britt said was true.

According to a news release from Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith’s office, Sen. Britt visited the Del Rio border sector in Texas in January 2023, accompanied by fellow Republican Sens. Marsha Blackburn and Hyde-Smith herself.

The release said that during this trip, the senators participated in a roundtable discussion with former Mexican Congresswoman Rosa María de la Garza, Fox News contributor Sara Carter, and Jacinto Romero, the survivor of human trafficking whose story Britt shared.

The roundtable allowed the senators to gain insights into cartel operations in Mexico and efforts underway to rescue victims of trafficking and exploitation, the Daily Mail reported.

Immigration was a key priority for Britt during her early Senate tenure.

When asked about the controversy, Britt responded, “Well, I very clearly said I spoke to a woman who told me about when she was trafficked when she was 12. So I didn’t say a teenager, I didn’t say a young woman. A grown woman — a woman — when she was trafficked, when she was 12.”

The reason Britt used the decades-old story was as a broader illustration of the evils of sex trafficking and cartel activity that she was pointing out has worsened amid the immigration crisis at the southern border.

Nothing about that can reasonably be construed to necessarily mean this happened under Biden.

Instead of focusing on the horrifying story of what the cartels are capable of, the Democrats turned the focus on when it happened.

According to a Reuters article published in September, migrants traveling through the Mexican border cities of Reynosa and Matamoros on their way to seek asylum in the United States are facing shockingly high rates of sexual violence, according to data from the Mexican government, humanitarian groups, and interviews with survivors.

Criminal organizations like the Gulf Cartel are taking advantage, kidnapping migrants for ransom if they arrive without a smuggler’s protection. “Rape is part of the torture process to get the money,” one expert said.

Survivors recount horrific stories of being held captive, with cartel members selecting women at will to be raped. One woman said she was repeatedly assaulted by a drug dealer in exchange for suspected narcotics deliveries to her captors.

Has one Democrat spoken up for these women?

Granted, the example Britt used was dated, but she used it because of its graphic nature, which Jacinto Romero was brave enough to share but reflects the experience of many women being trafficked over the border or assaulted just trying to cross over, who will never speak of it.

Who is speaking up for these women? Is the #Metoo movement only the privilege of celebrities?

This is the same mentality that made the Democrats freak out when Biden used the “wrong” label to describe the alleged murderer of Georgia student Laken Riley while dismissing the fact that he called the murder victim by the wrong name.

By focusing on the minutia, Democrats hope that they can distract voters enough that they miss the forest for the trees.

Whether the specific example Britt cited occurred 20 years ago or more recently is ultimately immaterial.

The fundamental truths she was highlighting — that young girls are still systematically abused in unfathomable ways and that current policies enable these atrocities to persist — should be the serious focus.

The real embarrassments are the people trying to cover up this real human tragedy in the mire of partisan fray.

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

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