“In recent days,” tweeted President Trump on Wednesday, “we have heard shameless attacks on our courageous law enforcement officers. Extremist Democrat politicians have called for the complete elimination of ICE.”
It’s shocking that an ostensibly mainstream political party would wish to do away with a key law enforcement agency that protects Americans every day.
Democratic politicians are rushing to express their support for ICE’s abolishment, including Rep. Mark Pocan (D-WI), Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR), Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-WA), Rep. Jim McGovern (D-MA). In January, Democratic Rep. Yvette Clarke called ICE the “Gestapo of the United States of America” and demanded its abolishment.
Several Democratic candidates are also calling to abolish this vital law enforcement agency. These include Randy Bryce in Wisconsin, Deb Halaand in New Mexico, Cynthia Nixon in New York, and three out of five Democratic candidates who hope to represent Miami, Florida. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a radical socialist who won a surprising upset primary victory in New York, campaigned heavily on abolishing the agency.
As retiring ICE chief Thomas Homan pointed out, ICE is simply following the very laws that Congress enacted.
“It’s insulting that a member of Congress would say, ‘abolish ICE’ when we’re enforcing the laws that Congress enacted. They give us a set of laws that we’re supposed to enforce and they give me the money to do it, then say, ‘abolish ICE,'” Homan said last week. “We’re doing what you told us to do.”
The Democrats are trying to use the family separation issue — which has nothing to do with ICE — as an excuse to end all immigration enforcement.
“You shouldn’t be protesting ICE about family separation because that happens on the border,” Homan said.
In saying that, Homan illuminated the true ignorance of the movement because the Left’s ire is being directed at the wrong agency. All the border issues they are complaining about are based on the lawful actions of U.S. Customs and Border Protection. So, why do they want to abolish ICE? Is it because “abolish Border Patrol” makes their goal of open borders a little too obvious?
Does the Left even fully understand what ICE does when they say “abolish ICE?” ICE performs a mission that goes well beyond immigration, as they primarily investigate smuggling, trafficking, transnational gangs, money laundering, international child pornography and human rights, among other missions. Do we really want to abolish the agency that performs these vital functions?
The other side of ICE’s mission is Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO). Of the aliens arrested by ERO in 2017, 92 percent had criminal convictions, pending criminal charges, were a fugitive, or had been previously removed. They aren’t targeting families or migrant workers, but rather violent criminals.
Some Democrats, while not going as far as their extremist colleagues, are insisting that the agency must be “re-examined.”
Senator Kamala Harris said, “I think there’s no question that we’ve got to critically re-examine ICE, and its role, and the way that it is being administered, and the work it is doing. And we need to probably think about starting from scratch.” Senator Angus King agreed, saying that Congress should “absolutely” examine the agency.
Of course, this is clearly just strategic electioneering. The Democrats have to find a focus of attack since President Trump is generating such positive results as president. But such an unfounded attack has consequences.
The Democrats’ extremist position is fueling their supporters’ extremist actions — actions that threaten the very fabric of this country and put us all in danger. There have been numerous protests at ICE detention centers and threats against ICE officials. WikiLeaks released the personal information of thousands of ICE agents.
This anti-law enforcement extremism proves that the Democrats demand open borders and want to let anyone who does enter illegally to roam free. Abolishing the agency tasked with removing illegal aliens from the homeland can have no other result.
This is not only detrimental to the national interest, it’s also part of a growing anti-law enforcement sentiment that has consumed the Democratic Party since the Obama administration. Democratic leaders have previously attacked thousands of hard-working police officers for doing their jobs.
Remember when Democrats chastised President Trump for criticizing another law enforcement agency — the FBI? In fact, the President condemned political bias in the upper ranks of the agency while expressing profound support for rank and file agents. The Democrats, on the other hand, attack the law enforcement officers at ICE who risk their lives every day to protect American citizens.
The whole charade is a throwback to the Vietnam War era when our men and women in uniform returned stateside to be condemned by Democrat lawmakers and spat upon by progressive activists in the streets.
Despite what the extremist Democrats tell the American people today, the American people need ICE. The Border Patrol, as its name suggests, can only patrol the border, and local police forces and the FBI already have enough to deal with. Without ICE, criminal illegal aliens, including Mexican cartel members and MS-13 gang members, would be free to wreak havoc on American communities. There’s also the threat of Islamic terror from illegal aliens from the Middle East which ICE investigates and apprehends as well.
“These radical protesters want ANARCHY – but the only response they will find from our government is LAW AND ORDER!” President Trump tweeted.
The growing calls to abolish ICE clearly demonstrate that the Democratic Party has been hijacked by the most radical elements of the American Left — and their leaders in Washington support their calls for outright anarchy.
In the process, they’re perfectly willing to put the safety of all Americans at risk by criminal illegal aliens, all for election-year political advantage. But it won’t work with Donald Trump, our law and order president.
Bernard Kerik is a security consultant and broadcast commentator who served as New York City Police Commissioner during the 9/11 attack on the World Trade Center.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.