Republican presidential candidate Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL) introduced legislation in the U.S. Senate to give more resources to the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency so it can enforce America’s immigration laws.
“For far too long, the Obama administration has discouraged enforcement of our nation’s immigration laws,” Cruz said in a statement. “President Obama has even personally threatened ‘consequences’ for the dedicated men and women who try to follow the law.”
“This legislation sends a clear signal of support to the ICE agents who risk their lives on a daily basis to enforce our nation’s immigration laws. The next administration must support the people who protect us from illegal immigration and punish those who break our laws.”
The legislation would enforce the penalties and fines on undocumented immigrants and then use that revenue for the agency.
The agency has been overwhelmed with the amount of undocumented immigrants in the United States. In 2015, Cruz engaged in a testy exchange with ICE Director Sarah Saldana at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing where accused the Obama administration of ignoring immigration enforcement policies.
Saldana said that the enforcement policies are “not practical” and “not smart” because of lack of funding and resources.