Congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez went to Texas over the weekend to protest the federal government’s treatment of immigrants.
Ocasio-Cortez, the Bronx native challenging U.S. Rep. and House Democratic Caucus Chairman Joe Crowley (D-Sunnyside, Astoria, College Point, East Elmhurst, Jackson Heights, Corona, Woodside, The Bronx), joined activists, organizers, and elected officials in Tornillo, Texas, over concerns of immigrants being separated from their children.
“America is at a crossroad for our moral legacy and the world is watching. What we do now impacts how we are seen around the world. We have not and will not forget the families that have been devastated by this administration cruel policies and together we must do whatever is in our power to ensure these families are reunited,” campaign spokesperson Corbin Trent said.
Undocumented immigrants who enter the country have been detained, while their children are sent to facilities. At least 2,700 children have been separated from their parents since October.
Ocasio-Cortez spoke against this policy in recent debates with her opponent and called for the abolition of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency. In an interview with Remezcla, Ocasio-Cortez noted the agency’s short history as it was established in 2003.
“They have no accountability to due process. They have no accountability to enforcing civil rights, which is why they violate all of those things flagrantly,” she said.
With 66 percent of Americans opposing the practice, President Donald Trump signed last week an executive order to stop family separation at the U.S.-Mexico border.
“It is unfortunate that Congress’s failure to act and court orders have put the Administration in the position of separating alien families to effectively enforce the law,” read the executive order.
Administration officials, meanwhile, have urged Congress to solve the issue with Department of Homeland Security secretary Kirstjen Nielsen telling reporters earlier this month that agents are addressing a “loophole” caused by federal lawmakers.
“The children are not being used as a pawn, we are trying to protect the children,” she said.
A spokesperson confirmed Ocasio-Cortez will be present for Tuesday’s primary.