Acting ICE Director Albence: Democrats who want to abolish ICE 'don't know what they're talking about'

Acting Immigration and Customs Enforcement Director Matt Albence said Friday that those who want to abolish ICE "don't know what they are talking about.”

“If you want to abolish ICE, what you’re saying is that you don’t want 140,000 criminals removed from the country every year,” Albence told "Fox & Friends," also listing other crucial ICE enforcement operations, including against human traffickers.

On Thursday, Georgia Rep. Doug Collins ripped into his Democratic colleagues at a House Judiciary Committee hearing on family separations at the border. Collins called Democrats' statements a political show and abandoned his prepared statement, urging lawmakers to “put a bill up” instead.

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Collins, the top Republican on the panel, said that family separation “is just one component of this crisis, as it is clear that conditions at border facilities have deteriorated to an unconscionable level.”

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When asked about humanitarian concerns about detention centers, Albence responded, “They’re safe, they’re humane, they’re secure, the individuals are not there for punitive purposes, they’re not being punished for a sentence or a criminal violation. They’re being detained, pending their immigration proceedings, prior to their removal.”

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Also on the show, Fox News correspondent Griff Jenkins toured an ICE detention facility in California. Albence said ICE facilities are different from the Border Patrol facilities, which have been called "concentration camps" by some on the left, including Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who has also called for ICE and the Department of Homeland Security to be disbanded.

Albence stressed that he disputes the "concentration camp" characterization, explaining that the current Border Patrol facilities "were not made for long-term detention" and Congress must provide funding for more appropriate facilities.

“We’ve been asking Congress for years to fund our detentions at the levels that we need, and they have failed to do so. If they had funded us at the 52,000 beds that we have requested in FY19, you would not see those conditions in the Border Patrol facilities right now,” Albence said.