- The Washington Times - Monday, July 2, 2018

Maryland Sen. Ben Cardin refused Monday to directly call for the abolition of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, as some in the Democratic Party are taking sides on the issue.

“I think there’s a great deal of frustration because the people carrying out the president’s policies are certainly being tested today,” Mr. Cardin said during an interview on CNN’s “New Day.”

The Democratic senator emphasized the problems he saw with President Trump’s policies regarding immigration and family separation. Mr. Cardin refused to specifically name ICE as part of the changes that need to occur. Rather, he doubled down on the need to change the administration’s policies.

“So, we’re going to have an agency. The question is what policy does that agency carry out,” he said.

The Democratic Party as a whole is divided over the abolish ICE movement.



Both Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren and New York Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand have joined the calls of progressive protests to end the agency over the weekend.

“ICE is meant to provide security and enforcement. But it has morphed into something much more by conducting raids and deporting people who’ve lived in and contributed to this country for many years,” Ms. Gillibrand said in a Facebook post. “Congress needs to abolish ICE, and we need to start over, separating the criminal justice and immigration roles.”

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a new prominent progressive face for the Democratic Party in New York, has made the abolition of ICE part of her campaign platform.

However, like Mr. Cardin, Connecticut Sen. Richard Blumenthal and Illinois Sen. Tammy Duckworth both argued on Sunday talk shows that the root of the U.S. immigration problems stem from the president’s policies.

“Abolishing ICE will accomplish nothing unless we change the Trump policies,” Mr. Blumenthal said on CBS News’ “Face the Nation.”

The president and his administration have stood by the agency.

Mr. Trump tweeted that ICE is doing a “fantastic job” on the border on Sunday.

“The call for the abolition of ICE in my view is the intersection of arrogance and ignorance,” Counselor to the President Kellyanne Conway said Monday during an interview on Fox News’ “Fox & Friends.”

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