Several freshmen Democrats ran on a platform of abolishing the primary federal agency responsible for interdicting drug traffickers, breaking up human smuggling rings, and deporting illegal aliens, but the new chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee says the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency will be staying around.
Rep. Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said Tuesday he won’t allow any legislation calling for ICE to be disbanded out of his committee.
“Will you bring an abolish ICE bill through your committee?” the Washington Times’ Stephen Dinan asked Rep. Thompson during C-SPAN’s “Newsmakers” progam.
“No,” he replied.
“I’ve been a supporter of ICE. 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,” Thompson continued.
“There have been some question about ICE’s interior enforcement role,” he said. “We need to look at that.
“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.
That sure sounds like Washington-speak for, “There is no support in the country to abolish ICE so I’m not really planning on doing anything regarding the agency.”
That said, incoming Democrats like Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (N.Y.) and incumbents like Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) and Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) — as well as New York City Mayor Bill De Blasio — have all called for abolishing ICE because the agency is effective at what it does, and far too many Democrats favor open borders.
Last July, Rep. Mark Pocan (D-Wis.) Introduced a bill called “Establishing a Humane Immigration Enforcement System Act,” to abolish ICE.
The bill was co-sponsored by Rep. Pramila Jayapal (D-Wash.), Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-N.Y), Rep. Jose Serrano (D-N.Y.), Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.), Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.), Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.), Rep. Nydia Velazquez (D-N.Y.), and Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-N.Y.).
Notice how none of those congresspeople represent Americans living along the porous U.S.-Mexico border, meaning none of them represent constituents who are negatively affected on a daily basis by human and drug smugglers.
If a bill should come out of Thompson’s committee that substantially alters ICE’s role, as in hamstringing the agency, it’s not likely to make it out of the Senate or get signed by the president.
That won’t satisfy the Democratic hard Left like Ocasio-Cortez, but she’s going to learn over the next few years that legislative victories for extremist ideas are few and far between.
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