As part of the left’s blind opposition to President Donald Trump — particularly with regard to his illegal immigration policies — a number of Democrats have called for the abolition of Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Though many Democrats have suggested that ICE be abolished over the past year, the charge against the agency tasked with internal enforcement of customs and immigration laws has been led by the outspoken democratic socialist from New York, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Unfortunately for her, the same zeal to abolish the agency that intercepts illegal drugs, breaks up human trafficking rings and deports illegal aliens is not shared by all of Ocasio-Cortez’s Democratic colleagues — especially one who sits in the unique position of having oversight over that government agency.
CNS News reported that Democratic Rep. Benny Thompson of Mississippi, who serves as chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee, said on Sunday that he would not allow any bills seeking to abolish ICE to be passed out of his committee.
Thompson’s remark came during an appearance Sunday on C-SPAN’s “News Makers” program. Washington Times reporter and politics editor Stephan Dinan asked Thompson about the anti-ICE stance among some of his fellow Democrats and whether he shared the notion that ICE should be abolished and if such legislation would be allowed to progress through his committee.
“Well, you know, I’ve been a supporter of ICE,” Thompson replied. “They do a job just like any operation. We can review what they do. And if we need to tweak it, I’m committed to doing that.”
“There have been some question about ICE’s interior enforcement role, and we need to look at that,” he continued. “As you know, we share jurisdiction of ICE with the Committee on Judiciary, so in some instances we’ll probably have to have joint hearings.”
“But I don’t think there’s any issue that we won’t look at to see if we can improve it,” he added.
Dinan interrupted and asked directly, “Will you bring an abolish ICE bill through your committee?”
Thompson simply replied, “No.”
Ocasio-Cortez and several others on the left have been on a warpath against ICE for nearly a year, comparing the agents to jack-booted thugs of fascist dictators while accusing them — generally without evidence — of committing various atrocities against innocent migrants lacking documentation, better known as illegal aliens.
However, it would appear that the effort to replace ICE with some sort of “humane” agency that would place illegal immigrants on a pedestal above U.S. citizens is essentially dead on arrival — even in a Democratic-majority House — as the chairman of the committee who would have to approve such a bill has already gone on record as defending the continued existence of the agency.
To be sure, Thompson will most likely conduct vigorous oversight of ICE, and may even allow for the passage of proposed legislation out of his committee that makes significant reforms to the agency — how such a bill might fare in the Senate is anybody’s guess — but he won’t allow for the abolition of ICE on his watch.
This is yet another sign of the increasingly fractured Democratic Party, which is being torn asunder from inside because of a deepening rift between a more moderate liberal wing that wishes to preserve the status quo versus a progressive left wing that wants to implement dramatic socialist reforms on the country.
It remains to be seen how that party split will play out over the next two years, and Republicans should refrain from jumping into the middle of the fray. It is usually better to just sit back and watch rivals beat each other up.
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