The Republican National Committee (RNC) mocked Democratic congressional candidate Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Tuesday after Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) — the agency she wants to abolish — deported a Nazi collaborator from her district.
95-year-old former Nazi guard Jakiw Palij was deported to Germany after several previous administrations had failed to convince the German government to take him. President Donald Trump and U.S. Ambassador to Germany Richard Grenell pushed hard for the deportation, and ICE carried it out.
Palij had lived in a “red brick house at 33-18 89th Street in Jackson Heights, Queens,” according to the New York Times. He lost his citizenship in 2003 after he was found to have lied on his immigration forms.
Ocasio-Cortez refers to ICE as “fascist” and ran on an explicit promise to abolish the agency.
The RNC asked rhetorically: “Now that ICE has literally removed a Nazi from her backyard, where does Ocasio-Cortez stand?”
.@ABC EXCLUSIVE: The last Nazi collaborator deported — ABC News was there as ICE agents wheeled 95 year old Jakiw Palij from his New York home: https://t.co/OmHJYmyw5V@tarapalmeri reports. pic.twitter.com/2SDW3tzgvY
— Good Morning America (@GMA) August 21, 2018
The Washington Post accused Trump and the Republicans of “seeking political advantage” from the deportation by pointing out Ocasio-Cortez’s stance against ICE.
“Ocasio-Cortez, a self-described Democratic socialist who is heavily favored to be elected to Congress in November, has described ICE as “the Gestapo.” … In reality, ICE had little to do with the timing of Ralij’s removal. ICE personnel are responsible for deporting people to other countries, but the decision to do so comes largely from the U.S. courts and the receiving countries,” the Post reported.
Ocasio-Cortez stood by her demand to abolish ICE, and accused Republicans of tolerating “white supremacy”:
#AbolishICE means not having an agency that incarcerates children and sexually assaults women with impunity.
It does not mean abolish deportation.
Also, I have no problem saying white supremacy has no place in this country.
It’s the GOP that struggles to say that. https://t.co/7gbXezIhu5
— Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (@Ocasio2018) August 21, 2018
It is not clear how Ocasio-Cortez would prefer to handle deportations.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. He is also the co-author of How Trump Won: The Inside Story of a Revolution, which is available from Regnery. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.