August 21, 2018

In 2018, Americans Are Safer Than Ever

Crime has dramatically fallen over the past decade — both violent and non-violent. Just 30 percent of respondents answered “yes” in an October 2017 survey that asked, "Is there any area near where you live — that is, within a mile — where you would be afraid to walk alone at night,” a historic low.

Despite these gains, powerful forces are seeking to reverse this progress. Left-wing activists and politicians are planning an all-out assault to undermine the rule of law by pushing a radical policy agenda in 2018.

Don’t be fooled: this isn’t progress, it’s lawlessness. Open borders, state-funded drug injection sites, and the dissolution of ICE are all on the table. These proposals must be stopped at the ballot box.

Since Donald Trump’s victory in 2016, the extremist wing of the Democratic Party has gained a considerable amount of influence over policy. Based largely on “Trump derangement syndrome,” this faction has sought to undo the law and order agenda that’s being pursued by President Trump and GOP lawmakers.

Nowhere is this better illustrated than with the ascent of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, New York’s soon to be new congresswoman. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, just 28-years-old and backed by the Democratic Socialists of America, has become a symbol for the Democrat’s far-left activist wing in 2018. She has been the most prominent voice helping to supercharge the #abolishICE and open borders movement.

According to Ocasio-Cortez, “we must abolish ICE and see to it that our undocumented neighbors are treated with the dignity and respect owed to all people, regardless of citizenship status.” Crazy as a statement like this may be to the average American, Ocasio-Cortez is far from alone.

More serious political heavyweights like Democratic Sens. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-N.Y.) have also backed this call. "The President's deeply immoral actions have made it obvious that we need to rebuild our immigration system from top to bottom, starting by replacing ICE with something that reflects our values," noted Warren in a recent statement.

Unsurprisingly, Ocasio-Cortez and her allies are attempting to mislead the public about ICE’s role in protecting America. Don’t believe their lies: the honorable men and women of ICE have helped make this country safer.

In 2017 alone, 92 percent of those arrested by ICE “had criminal convictions, pending criminal charges, were an immigration fugitive, or were an illegal re-entrant.” More than 4,800 gang-related arrests were made and the number of MS-13 members put behind bars increased 87 percent from the prior year.

Not to mention that ICE assists in preventing terrorists from sneaking into the United States through its Counterterrorism and Criminal Exploitation Unit. Yet Ocasio-Cortez would rather hobble our fight against groups like al-Qaeda than pass up the opportunity to score political points with her far-left base.

Predictably, however, the push to #abolishICE is just one of several outlandish policies that the left has been attempting to ram into the public discourse. Sanctuary cities, which actively harbor illegal immigrants, are on the rise across the country. 

These cities stop officials from cooperating with immigration enforcement officers who pursue repeat criminal offenders. Worse, they pro-actively hinder the process of tracking and pinning down potential fugitives.

In fact, we know these cities aren’t keeping folks safe — they’re doing the opposite. Official government statistics from former ICE Director Thomas Homan clear up any confusion.

According to Homan, nearly 10,000 individuals who were released instead of turned over to officials, committed an additional crime between January 2014 and August 2017. 

Some sold narcotics. Some drove drunk. Some even committed heinous violent crimes against innocent people. These sanctuaries are little more than a refuge for criminals who may be harmful to society. 

And the lawlessness doesn’t end there. Liberals are pushing to open “safe injection sites,” which allow drug users to shoot up in a state-sanctioned environment under medical supervision. These sites, which are illegal in nature, have no stringent rules or regulations on who can use and when.

Are police going to be forced to sit back and watch a teenager try Black Tar Heroin for the first time? Will drug dealers be allowed prey on victims with easy access? 

It’s time to put a stop to the madness.

Thankfully, President Trump and the GOP-controlled Congress have been working hard to uphold the rule of law. Harsher sentences for drug dealers. Empowered border patrol agents. Legal action over sanctuary cities. Threats to halt state-sponsored drug shoot-up galleries.

This enforcement must continue. Our country must remain a haven for its law-abiding citizens, not lawbreakers. America can’t afford to go backward. Everyone deserves to feel secure in their neighborhoods and homes. 

Don’t let the left turn back the clock. Help send a strong message to Ocasio-Cortez and her liberal posse that their policy agenda is not what our country needs in 2018.

-- Alex Titus, Policy Advisor for America First Policies

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