Katie Britt Fallout Continues

Senator insists she was not trying to mislead with decades-old sex trafficking story out of Mexico
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 11, 2024 12:13 PM CDT
Independent Journalist Flagged Katie Britt's Timeline
Sen. Katie Britt, R-Ala.   (AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib, File)

Sen. Katie Britt's first big foray onto the national stage continues to make headlines, but probably not the ones she'd wanted. The junior Alabama senator delivered the GOP rebuttal to President Biden's State of the Union address, and she's been fending off criticism ever since that she misleadingly used the story of a girl's sex trafficking in Mexico in an attack against Biden's immigration policies.

  • Victim's view: Karla Jacinto, the now 31-year-old woman whose story Britt recounted, has taken issue with the senator's use of her story. Jacinto confirms to CNN that her abuse occurred years ago, when George W. Bush was president, and in Mexico, far from the US border. She wasn't trafficked by drug cartels, as Britt said, but by an individual pimp, and she met the senator during a forum with other activists last year, not one-on-one. Jacinto now works as a victims' advocate.

  • Britt's defense: The senator insists she wasn't trying to imply that Jacinto's story took place recently. In her SOTU rebuttal, she said: "We wouldn't be OK with this happening in a Third World country. This is the United States of America, and it is past time, in my opinion, that we start acting like it. President Biden's border policies are a disgrace." At the Washington Post, Aaron Blake writes that "pointing to a story that doesn't involve Biden, immigration or the cartels and is two decades old to attack Biden's present-day border policies and warn about the cartels doesn't really make any sense."
  • The journalist: Jonathan Katz, an independent journalist and former AP reporter, first brought to light how old the incident was, notes Poynter. He tells the Flaming Hydra site that he did a simple Google search, figured out the timelines, and laid it all out in a TikTok video. "I don't know why nobody else picked up on that, because the big detail that got my attention was that she says that the trafficking had started when this woman was 12, and well, then that can't—Joe Biden's only been president for three years, so he can't—it made no sense," he tells Flaming Hydra. Katz accuses Britt of being "beyond misleading."
  • SNL treatment: Britt was ridiculed on Saturday Night Live, with none other than Scarlett Johansson (wife of cast member Colin Jost) impersonating her. Watch it here. However, Britt was defended by Donald Trump.
(More Katie Britt stories.)

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