Albany, NY – A candidate for Attorney General for the state of New York said she wanted to abolish and prosecute U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
Fordham law professor Zephyr Teachout is running as a Democrat in the Sept. 13 primary to replace disgraced former Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, who resigned in May after he was accused of sexual abuse by multiple women, FOX News reported.
Teachout filmed a campaign video featured on Now This News where she went on a rant about her desire to do away with the immigration agency and punish those who have enforced U.S. immigration laws.
“ICE has to be abolished. And I say that as somebody who is running for one of the top law enforcement jobs in the country… I think it’s critical that law enforcement speak out and say this is a tool of cruelty, unconstitutional behavior, illegality,” she said in the video.
Then the candidate went on to explain that she doesn’t subscribe to the legality of citizenship.
“There’s so much wrong with ICE that goes to its very structure. The idea that people are illegal. The idea that we should see immigrants as a national security threat. And that ICE should be placed under the Department of Homeland Security, by the way the area where the President has the greatest authority to do the most damage, just does not make any sense,” Teachout ranted in the video.
Without offering any alternative solutions to protecting U.S. borders, the candidate went on the offensive and said she wanted prosecute ICE agents, calling enforcing the law “criminal.”
“ICE was born in xenophobia in the time after 9/11, and has grown up to become a tool of fear and illegality. And as Attorney General, I will continue to speak out against ICE. I will prosecute ICE for their criminal acts. We have stories of consistent abuse within ICE. The idea that we could call this law enforcement is a real offense to the idea of law itself. And as a candidate for AG, I think it’s really important to speak out to abolish ICE,” Teachout finished her video.
Acting ICE Director Ronald Vitiello fought back against the candidate’s assertions that those enforcing U.S. immigration laws were committing “criminal acts” on FOX & Friends on Thursday morning.
“ICE enforces the law that Congress gives us and the President signs. That’s how our system works. If people don’t like how our system works, then there’s a specific way to change it,” Vitiello said.
Teachout, who lost to New York Governor Andrew Cuomo in the 2014 gubernatorial primary, was only the latest liberal Democrat to jump on the #AbolishICE bandwagon in New York.
Likely Democratic presidential primary candidate U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D – New York) has said she would like to dismantle ICE.
LGBTQ activist and “Sex in the City” actress Cynthia Nixon, who is running against Cuomo in the September primary, called ICE a “terrorist organization,” FOX News reported.
Democratic congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio have both called ICE “broken,” according to FOX News.