Even as the Joe Biden White House tries to accuse Republicans of “defunding the police,” some Democrats want to slash funding not only for cops on the beat but also for officers at the border — in the middle of a border crisis! Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), one of the members of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s infamous “squad,” called for the effective elimination of Customs and Border Patrol (CBP), Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the entire Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
“We must eliminate funding for CPB [sic], ICE, and their parent organization, DHS,” Tlaib said. “Time after time, we have seen it… that these agencies are inept at humanely guiding migrants through our immigration system. Instead, they further continue to terrorize migrant communities located within our communities.”
The Republican National Committee (RNC) shared a video of Tlaib’s remarks.
Democrat Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib says that “we must eliminate funding for CBP, ICE and their parent organization DHS” pic.twitter.com/aaLHQX0quH
— RNC Research (@RNCResearch) July 7, 2021
Tlaib further suggested that CBP, ICE, and DHS are “targeting communities of color, in a way that… very much violates human rights,” an echo of the accusation that police forces are infected with “institutional racism.”
In calling for the “elimination of funding” to not just ICE and CBP but DHS, Tlaib demanded that the federal government effectively dismantle the agency in charge of all federal law enforcement — from border agents to DEA agents who focus on cartels to the officers who protect the federal courthouse in Portland.
Sen. Tom Cotton (R-Ark.) suggested that Tlaib and her fellow Democrats “want to turn America into a sanctuary country for all illegal aliens from around the world.”
“It would be interesting to me if Rashida Tlaib would explain exactly who she thinks should be excluded from our country when they show up at our border… or who should be deported,” Cotton mused. “Maybe her answer would be conservatives or Republicans or anyone who voted for Trump last year.”
"Rashida Tlaib and most Democrats think that we should totally open borders and that anyone should be able to come into this country… that is a recipe for disaster." @SenTomCotton responds after Rep Tlaib calls for eliminate funding for CBP, ICE & DHS @DanaPerino pic.twitter.com/ID8TNn0oyO
— America's Newsroom (@AmericaNewsroom) July 8, 2021
The defunding of border patrol seems particularly dangerous amid the crisis on America’s southern border. Border agents stopped 180,034 people in May, not including the number of illegal immigrants who got away, at least 40,000 in April. Voters are increasingly recognizing the border crisis, as Democrats all but ignore it.
Yet the Democratic House Appropriations Committee has released its new budgets for fiscal year 2022. The DHS funding bill would slash CBP funding by almost $1 billion, while the military spending bill has earmarked $870 billion for border security… in the Middle East!
Biden’s proposed budget would also cut CBP funding, though not by as much. While the president has seemed far less enthusiastic about defunding law enforcement than his Democratic allies, he has echoed the claims of “institutional racism” among police. He also bears a great deal of responsibility — if not all of it — for the border crisis.
Biden rushed to reverse the Trump policies that had gotten the border crisis under control. Not only did the president order an end to border wall construction, but he also ended the “Remain in Mexico” policy that required asylum seekers to remain in Mexico until their cases had been adjudicated. Biden also unilaterally dropped Trump’s “safe third country” deals with Latin American countries like Mexico, Guatemala, and El Salvador that enabled the U.S. to direct asylum seekers to settle in countries that were safe for them, rather than allowing them into the U.S.
Biden’s campaign rhetoric — promising a deportation moratorium (that got blocked by court order) and health care for illegal aliens, among other things — arguably encouraged migrants to rush to America. Immigrants have come to the border wearing shirts that read, “Biden please let us in!”
Amid this crisis, Biden needs to reverse course — and he needs to rein in his left flank. Tlaib’s talk about defunding all of DHS may not translate into congressional action, but it may further embolden migrants who already consider Biden’s presidency a golden opportunity to bolt for the Land of the Free.