Appearing on Fox & Friends on Monday, a Virginia sheriff blasted the Biden administration for its policy on illegal immigration, saying that President Biden has “effectively and functionally dismantled ICE, basically telling the agents to stand down.”
Fox & Friends host Steve Doocy prompted Frederick County Sheriff Chuck Jenkins to comment on the issue, remarking, “Out on the campaign trail, Joe Biden said, ‘During the Obama-Biden administration, we deported too many people.’ … Well, he certainly has taken a big step in that direction.”
“This is absolutely outrageous, Steve,” Jenkins replied. “Americans should be angry and outraged. What he’s done is effectively and functionally dismantled ICE, basically telling the agents to stand down. There will be no enforcement.”
Doocy continued by referencing an article in The Washington Post that discussed the Biden administration’s approach to illegal immigration. Doocy said, “They say they will not deport people who are in this country illegally if they get a DUI, assault, money laundering, property crimes, fraud, tax crimes, solicitation, or charges without convictions, so for a variety of crimes, despite the fact that you are in the country illegally, Sheriff, they won’t deport you.”
Jenkins replied, “They won’t, Steve, and one thing that’s always considered in the deportations, are the criminal histories, so regardless of the felony, regardless of the event, the crime, these people are going to roam our streets with impunity. It’s absolutely ridiculous.” He added, “So, listen, what this is gonna do; this is going to be disastrous, dangerous, gonna impact every county, every city, every community in this country. And again, this is total lawlessness. We have to have interior enforcement along with strong border security or we have no laws.”
Doocy asked, “Will the public be safe with rules like this where you can get arrested for a variety of reasons but they won’t send you back? Will we be safe going forward with this kind of direction?”
“Steve, the answer is no,” Jenkins bluntly replied. “We’ve seen this year after year after year. Americans will not be safe. Immigrant communities will not be safe. These types of laws lead to more victims of crime, more violent crime, gangs infiltrating this country. Steve, the answer is no. Americans will not be safer.”
“Why is Joe Biden doing this?” Doocy asked.
“I believe a part of this is, listen, they’re angry at President Trump,” Jenkins replied. “Everything that he, all the strides that he made in stronger immigration enforcement over the past 4 years, they’re totally being undone and dismantled.”
The Washington Post reported on Sunday:
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement is preparing to issue new guidelines to agents this week that could sharply curb arrests and deportations … While ICE’s new operational plans are not yet final, interim instructions sent to senior officials point to a major shift in enforcement. Agents will no longer seek to deport immigrants for crimes such as driving under the influence and assault, and will focus instead on national security threats, recent border crossers and people completing prison and jail terms for aggravated felony convictions.
Acting U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement director Tae Johnson reportedly emailed senior officials, explaining, “Generally, these convictions would not include drug based crimes (less serious offenses), simple assault, DUI, money laundering, property crimes, fraud, tax crimes, solicitation, or charges without convictions.”
One official told the Post, “They’ve abolished ICE without abolishing ICE. The pendulum swing is so extreme. It literally feels like we’ve gone from the ability to fully enforce our immigration laws to now being told to enforce nothing.”
The Post noted that the new draft guidelines are “awaiting approval by Department of Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, who was confirmed by the Senate on Tuesday.”
On Monday, asked about “new reporting that ICE is going to get some new guidance to no longer focus on deporting illegal immigrants who have been convicted of DUI, simple assault, solicitation, drug-based crimes among other things,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki answered, “The priority for the enforcement of immigration laws will be on those who are posing a national security threat, of course, a public safety threat and on recent arrivals. Nobody is saying that DUIs or assault are acceptable behavior, and those arrested for such activities should be tried and sentenced as appropriate by local law enforcement. But we’re talking about the prioritization of who is going to be deported from the country.”