A candidate for New York attorney general, Zephyr Teachout, has some ideas about abolishing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), including prosecuting officers.
Teachout is a law professor at Fordham University who is now running for attorney general to try to combat President Donald Trump’s administration.
State attorneys general have the ability to stall Trump’s executive actions by suing the administration.
Former Attorney General Eric Schneiderman worked to impede the Trump administration before resigning after multiple allegations of sexual harassment and abuse surfaced.
Teachout described her plans to abolish ICE in an interview with NowThis.
‘[ICE] is a tool of cruelty, unconstitutional behavior, illegality.’ — Zephyr Teachout is promising to prosecute ICE if elected AG of New York pic.twitter.com/lq7uRc2us6
— NowThis (@nowthisnews) August 1, 2018
“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 have so much to say about ICE, let me think about it quickly. I think it’s critical that law enforcement speak out and say, ‘This is a tool of cruelty, unconstitutional behavior, illegality.’ There’s so much wrong with ICE that goes to its very structure. […] ICE was born in xenophobia in the time after 9/11 and has grown up to become a tool of fear and illegality.
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 can call this law enforcement is a real offense to the idea of law itself. And as AG, and as a candidate for AG, I feel like it’s really important to speak out to abolish ICE.”
Teachout also contested the idea that border enforcement should be housed under the Department of Homeland Security and the executive branch because the president has the power to “do the most damage”:
“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.”
Many hopped on Twitter to blast Teachout for her failure to understand the separation of powers:
What I want in an attorney general is definitely a complete lack of understanding of the U.S. Constitution https://t.co/81P1MRp92n
— Alex Griswold (@HashtagGriswold) August 1, 2018
— Ashe Schow (@AsheSchow) August 2, 2018
If you want to be dumber, watch this. https://t.co/QH2OjAqTk3
— John Cardillo (@johncardillo) August 2, 2018
Teachout has been running on a platform of anti-corruption. She must defeat three other Democrats and one Republican to win the title of New York’s attorney general.