"The end of the game is tearing it apart piece by piece": Dems 'ICE overhaul has begun View larger image
House Democrats get ready to eliminate immigration and customs enforcement. John Moore / Images
House Democrats begin to gut Immigration " and Customs Enforcement - the federal agency responsible for arresting and deporting illegal immigrants - in the midst of a raging crisis at the southern that has athas grown exponentially since President Biden took office.
The House Appropriations Committee last week approved a plan to fundamentally overhaul the part of the ICE that deals " with illegal immigration , known as enforcement and removal operations (ERO), as well as changes to how federal law enforcement officials would treat migrants.
But Progressive Democrats, some of whom in 2018 called for the outright abolition of ICE, didn't stop there.
"With the new budget, what they're doing right now is they're tearing ICE up. The end of the game is to tear it apart piece by piece, ”said Tom " Homan , a federal immigration officer who oversaw the ICE during theTrump administration.
The House Appropriations Committee approved a plan that would fundamentally change the part of operations ICE application and removal. Smith Collection / Gado / Images
House Democrats have further reduced the ICE 's budget for detaining people, cutting $ 331.6 million below the level adopted in 2021.
"After the election, we were seven senior [officials] to say, "OK, we need a plan", because we knew that this hasIt would be the start of the ousting of the ERO, "said a second former senior ICE official who asked to remain anonymous.
"But honestly, we didn't think it was going to get this bad.
As part of the House measure, the ERO would focus on the quick transfer adults and families encountered as they crossed the illegally to non-government facilities.
representing Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez campaigned for the abolition of the ICE. Kevin Dietsch / Images
Existing family residential centers run by for-profit associations the companies have already started to withdraw and the new shelters, which are currently housed in large hotels in several states of the south, would receive large contracts from non-profit organizations in partnership with the government.
Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the fiery Socialist Progressive Democrat who represents the Bronx and Queens, proposed the idea of ending the ICE in the mainstream during his first congressional campaign in 2018. That summer, House Democrats introduced a bill long-drawn-out law to do just that, although the legislation never took off.
However, AOC's message and the election victory in November 2018, prompted others Democrats to join her, especiallySenator Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, Senator Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio.
Tom Homan, on the left, has said the Democrats' plan is to tear ICE apart. Chip Somodevilla / Images
The future of ICE was not a major point of contention during the elections last year, but reform of the ICE has been at the center of President Biden's agenda for the past six months, even as migrants have flocked to the US-Mexico and the United States. activity ofhe smuggling of coyotes has increased dramatically.
In February, the acting ICE chief told officers they would no longer be allowed to arrest illegal immigrants, including those convicted of crimes, unless they would not be considered a threat to national security, higher level criminal offense, or fall into several other categories.
Nonetheless, Representative Henry Cuellar of Texas, the second-highest Democrat on the Homeland Security Appropriations subcommittee, who is seen as a centrist, defended the vote for the bill, insisting on the fact that the ICE would break even overall, getting $ 7.97 billion, which is $ 1.55 million less than it received last year.
Families in Central America board a United States Customs and Border Protection bus for transport to an immigrant processing center after crossed the Mexican . John Moore / Images figure>
L ' Last year, the ERO received $ 4.1 billion, but is expected to receive $ 3.79 billion under the current House budget. The other component of the ICE, Homeland Security Investigations, receives hundreds of millions of dollars more than last year, offsetting the decline in ERO funds, he said.
"Despite this problem, the law provides the big mamost resources needed to protect our country, ”Cuellar told The Post.
“As a senior member of the Appropriations Committee and Vice-Chairman of the Homeland Security Subcommittee, I have no doubts that these funding issues will be corrected before the bill goes on. the president's office. West Virginia Republican Representative Shelley Moore Capito spoke out against the potential bill. Evelyn Hockstein-Pool / Images
But Senator Shelley Moore Capito (RW.V.) told The Post the bill contained "huge flaws and could not be signed into law.
"As the main Republican of the Homeland Security Appropriations Subcommittee, I will do my best to correct this flawed legislation, especially the enforcement and security provisions, which are inadequateboth policy and funding levels and will make us less secure. "