Why Democrats call for ICE to be abolished

CNN's Van Jones explains the controversy around the calls to eliminate the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.

Posted: Jul 3, 2018 12:22 PM
Updated: Jul 3, 2018 12:22 PM

More Democrats have joined the growing list of names who want to abolish US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, more commonly known as ICE.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who beat Democratic Rep. Joe Crowley of New York in the primary last week, ran on a platform of abolishing the agency, and so far, more lawmakers have echoed her call.

Rep. Mark Pocan of Wisconsin said he would introduce legislation that would dismantle ICE and create a commission to provide recommendations to Congress on how the government "can implement a humane immigration enforcement system," according to a statement.

The issue comes after the Trump administration's "zero-tolerance" policy, which referred all people who cross the border illegally for criminal prosecution on top of immigration proceedings.

As a result of enforcing that policy, parents and children who cross illegally are separated because the parents are put into the criminal justice system.

But last month, Trump reversed course and signed an executive order to keep families together.

Customs and Border Protection and ICE serve different functions. CBP enforces immigration laws on the US borders and ICE enforces immigration laws throughout the country.

The White House tweeted at Democratic Sens. Elizabeth Warren and Kamala Harris in an attempt to clarify the role of ICE to the lawmakers, while also accusing them of supporting unlawful activities and the MS-13 gang.

".@SenWarren, why are you supporting criminals moving weapons, drugs, and victims across our nation's borders? You must not know what ICE really does. Here is a link to help you out," they tweeted at Warren, as well as a similar tweet to Harris, that included a link to an official government page about ICE's Border Enforcement Security Task Force.

The White House tweeted at Harris, writing, ".@SenKamalaHarris, why are you supporting the animals of MS-13? You must not know what ICE really does" with a link to a press release about ICE deporting a Salvadoran MS-13 affiliate, as well as an Irish national.

Here's a look at the lawmakers who have said they want to abolish the agency:

Senators

Kirsten Gillibrand of New York

"I don't think ICE today is working as intended," Gillibrand said Thursday night on CNN's "Cuomo PrimeTime." "I believe that it has become a deportation force, and I think you should separate the criminal justice from the immigration issues."

Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts

In a Facebook post on Saturday, Warren wrote, "The President's deeply immoral actions have made it obvious that we need to rebuild our immigration system from top to bottom, starting by replacing ICE with something that reflects our values," a line that mirrored her statements in a speech at a protest in Boston.

House members

Mark Pocan of Wisconsin

"From conducting raids at garden centers, and meatpacking plants, to breaking up families at churches and schools, ICE is tearing apart families and ripping the moral fabric of our nation," he said in a statement.

Pramila Jayapal of Washington

"We need to set up a commission that looks at the alternatives to ICE and really starts to understand how do we have these functions in a way that is accountable, transparent and humane," Jayapal told The Hill.

Earl Blumenauer of Oregon

"We should be prioritizing the protection of families and our borders in a humane and thoughtful way. People should be treated with compassion and respect. ICE is simply not doing that," Blumenauer said in a statement. "Trump and his administration have made the agency so toxic that it's time to abolish ICE, and start over."

Jim McGovern of Massachusetts

"We need to start a fresh conversation. If there are elements that work, we can maintain and strengthen those aspects. Otherwise, we need to thoroughly reevaluate and re-think immigration enforcement," he said in a post to his website.

Rep. Nydia Velázquez of New York

"While eliminating ICE would be an important step, it alone is not enough to halt Donald Trump's deportation machine," she said in a statement. "This Administration is attacking immigrants on a multitude of fronts and we must resist on all of them. That includes reuniting and releasing families separated at the border, ending family detention and passing protections for Dreamers and TPS recipients."

Raul Grijalva of Arizona

Adriano Espaillat of New York

Others

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio

He told WNYC's Brian Lehrer, "ICE's time has come and gone."

Democratic congressional nominee Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez

Calling for changes to ICE

Kamala Harris of California

"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," she told MSNBC. "And we need to probably think about starting from scratch."

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 755401

Reported Deaths: 8531
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1513291905
Ramsey62614972
Dakota56158520
Anoka53010513
Washington33145327
Stearns27922252
St. Louis23178352
Scott21316159
Wright20879170
Olmsted17821118
Sherburne15232111
Carver1336954
Clay1006598
Rice9855131
Blue Earth949559
Crow Wing9254105
Kandiyohi819195
Chisago816662
Otter Tail7807104
Benton7363108
Beltrami633276
Mower631740
Douglas616189
Goodhue603683
Winona603653
Itasca596978
McLeod580868
Steele572425
Isanti558172
Morrison541565
Becker518762
Polk502577
Freeborn480842
Nobles477052
Lyon444456
Carlton438666
Nicollet423051
Pine419930
Cass413142
Mille Lacs403565
Brown398846
Todd389336
Le Sueur378331
Meeker350452
Waseca322629
Martin316534
Wabasha28495
Hubbard283644
Dodge26819
Roseau258924
Fillmore236312
Redwood234143
Wadena230229
Houston229017
Renville224249
Faribault214630
Pennington213227
Sibley204512
Cottonwood193027
Kanabec187130
Chippewa185839
Aitkin178442
Watonwan168711
Pope15328
Rock153219
Yellow Medicine151120
Jackson144114
Koochiching137219
Clearwater133318
Swift132619
Pipestone131627
Marshall131419
Murray131310
Stevens122311
Lake106221
Wilkin100214
Lac qui Parle95024
Mahnomen86312
Norman8459
Big Stone7874
Grant7669
Lincoln7525
Kittson59522
Red Lake5769
Unassigned528124
Traverse5005
Lake of the Woods4524
Cook2420

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 467281

Reported Deaths: 6685
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk73698716
Linn28680379
Scott24441271
Black Hawk20130355
Woodbury18854242
Johnson17800100
Dubuque15577228
Pottawattamie14073197
Dallas13894107
Story1275148
Warren763496
Webster6876111
Cerro Gordo6816107
Clinton6814100
Des Moines657893
Marshall635484
Muscatine6294113
Wapello5807136
Jasper571478
Lee560787
Sioux560276
Marion499791
Buena Vista489745
Plymouth459187
Henry378647
Jones365160
Washington362255
Bremer353867
Benton352056
Boone344837
Carroll341753
Crawford337345
Mahaska313656
Dickinson297651
Clay274631
Buchanan274239
Jackson270445
Kossuth269373
Hardin266448
Tama261476
Fayette253848
Delaware253444
Cedar246326
Page244827
Wright240945
Winneshiek230837
Hamilton228553
Floyd216744
Harrison215277
Madison214325
Clayton210058
Poweshiek206840
Iowa204229
Butler203237
Jefferson197340
Mills197227
Allamakee192952
Cherokee191943
Lyon190641
Cass190557
Winnebago185432
Hancock184739
Calhoun184115
Appanoose175950
Shelby174239
Louisa169651
Grundy167937
Emmet163842
Franklin163328
Humboldt161826
Mitchell161843
Union159437
Chickasaw156418
Sac156323
Guthrie154034
Palo Alto140831
Clarke140028
Montgomery138941
Keokuk137534
Monroe131534
Howard125422
Ida116641
Davis113825
Greene113712
Lucas112224
Pocahontas109323
Monona107436
Worth10678
Adair103634
Osceola91117
Fremont83711
Van Buren82721
Decatur81212
Taylor78612
Wayne72024
Ringgold66827
Audubon64514
Adams4984
Unassigned150
Rochester
Clear
51° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 37°
Feels Like: 51°
Mason City
Clear
46° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 36°
Feels Like: 42°
Albert Lea
Partly Cloudy
50° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 50°
Austin
Partly Cloudy
48° wxIcon
Hi: 68° Lo: 33°
Feels Like: 48°
Charles City
Partly Cloudy
52° wxIcon
Hi: 69° Lo: 35°
Feels Like: 52°
Plenty of sunshine through the weekend
KIMT Radar
KIMT Eye in the sky

Latest Video

Image

Afghan Evacuee Coat Drive

Image

Cans For Kids Event

Image

ROCHESTER RECORD SHOW

Image

RONALD MCDONALD CANS FOR KIDS

Image

THE LANDING FOOD AND CLOTHING DRIVE

Image

Full Saturday Forecast 10/16/21

Image

Growing ghouls grab hallowing candy during "Trunk or Treat Fall Festival"

Image

Rochester Community Warming Center celebrates third season open

Image

Rochester Community Warming Center celebrates third season

Image

Inside look at MercyOne North Iowa's battle against COVID-19

Community Events