“Abolish ICE” has become a rallying cry among progressive candidates and activists, but remains limited to the left-wing of the Democratic Party – at least in races where winning depends on attracting the support of swing voters.
One of the top pick-up targets for congressional races is CD39, currently represented by retiring Rep. Ed Royce (R-Fullerton). While he welcomed progressives support in the jungle primary in June, Democrat standard bearer Gil Cisneros wants nothing to do with the leftist cause celebre as he heads into the November run-off with conservative Republican Young Kim.
Susan Crabtree of the Washington Free Beacon reported on how Democrat candidates in the 10 top targets in California are keeping the leftist movement at arms length – including Cisneros, whose spokesman Nic Jordan told Crabtree:
“Gil does not support abolishing ICE … He believes Congress must look into and address the multiple stories of ICE detaining legal residents, including some U.S. citizens, and deporting law-abiding immigrants rather than going after criminals and terrorists.”
Young Kim, herself an immigrant from South Korea, supports ICE and slammed calls to eliminate the agency:
“ICE plays an important law enforcement role in protecting our border and keeping our nation secure. Calls to abolish ICE are foolish and nothing more than political pandering.”
The “Abolish ICE” movement shows the limits of progressive politics, especially in Orange County. There just aren’t that many voters who share the open borders mentality of OC’s progressive cadres. For swing voters, progressive fads like “Abolish ICE” and the sanctuary city/state movement translate into chaos and the subordination to the law to ideology.
CD39 is a swing district, but it is also a red district at its core. The fact that he’s running away from the “Abolish ICE” movement indicates the Cisneros understands that reality.