Written by Joe Guzzardi is a Progressives for Immigration Reform analyst
In today’s polarized America, and in the midst of an increasingly bitter, partisan presidential campaign, the most basic requirements for sound decision-making – reason, facts, common sense – now seem too often ignored as logic frequently is left behind. That includes for even one of the most essential stanchions of our civilized society – the need for basic law enforcement.
Squaring today’s awful political reality with Democratic candidates’ demands that certain law enforcement agencies, specifically Immigration and Customs Enforcement, be abolished or neutered shows an acute misunderstanding of ICE’s principal functions. ICE provides numerous law enforcement services, including the monitoring of the illegal movement of people – child smuggling and other human smuggling for illicit profit – and works to prevent terrorism.
Recently, ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations arm arrested Darrick Bell, a U.S. citizen, and five others, and in a nine-count indictment charged them with human trafficking, drug trafficking, money laundering, extortion and conspiracy, among other charges.
Other recent ICE and Enforcement Removal Operations (ERO) actions: the arrests and removals of a convicted Iranian arms dealer, of a Salvadoran living in Chicago and suspected of terrorism in his home country, a Chinese businesswoman indicted on student visa/business visa fraud, and a Salvadoran gangster deported to his home country to face charges of murder and gang violence. Although the impression most Democratic candidates would like to convey about ICE is that the agency is all about separating families and deporting nannies – actions it has little or no interest in – it provides many more essential functions that protect our country and its citizens, especially in an increasingly uncertain America.
Among promises that the Democratic candidates made during the recent debates are ones wholly inconsistent with public safety, and irrational on their face. In various hedged language double-talk, the 2020 presidential hopefuls promised to decriminalize illegal immigration, a lure of immeasurable proportion to prospective migrants worldwide. The ongoing Southwest border crisis has proven that no distance is too great for migrants to travel when motivated by the prospect of asylum. Migrants have arrived from as far as the Democrat Republic of Congo, Angola and China. If open borders, or quasi open borders, were ever declared, should the extremist views that have come to dominate the Democrat Party today translate to policy, the Central American population influx that now dominates would, by comparison, be a mere trickle.
In other words, ain’t nothing what we’re seeing now compared to the mayhem and chaos that could ensue – a new Wild, Wild West of epic, destabilizing population numbers – if sanity in our immigration enforcement is not allowed to prevail.
Although most of the Democratic candidates are seasoned politicians, they appear blind to the sentiments of Americans on immigration. Even making allowances for their own personal pro-immigration biases, their determination to press ahead with an agenda that is so at odds with general public opinion – and common sense – is shocking and unfathomable.
A Gallup poll taken in July, after months of stories about mass migration from Central America, showed that a record-high number of Americans identified immigration as the nation’s top concern. Immigration surpassed overall worries about the federal government’s direction, Gallup’s perennial poll leader. More potentially troubling news for hardcore immigration Democrats: another poll taken among all-important Independent voters showed them leaning toward a stronger immigration stance.
The Democratic National Convention will be held in July 2020. From the field of more than 20 candidates will come one. To have any hope of winning a national election, the campaign survivor will have to tack toward the center. But the nominee will have left behind a long trail of radical immigration sound bites that will be impossible to disavow.
Joe Guzzardi is a Progressives for Immigration Reform analyst who has written about immigration for more than 30 years. Contact him at [email protected].