By Ken Thomas / AP
July 6, 2018

(WASHINGTON) — Vice President Mike Pence is defending federal immigration authorities charged with detaining and deporting migrants entering the country illegally, and he’s accusing Democrats of making opposition to U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement the “center” of their party.

In a speech at the agency’s headquarters, Pence says Democratic Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand and Elizabeth Warren and New York Mayor Bill de Blasio have called for the abolition of ICE.

He says President Donald Trump “will never abolish ICE” and is calling for an end to the “spurious attacks.”

Pence made his comments as the agency and the Trump administration are scrutinized for separating migrant children from their parents as they cross the U.S.-Mexico border. The policy has led to nationwide protests.

Gillibrand, Warren and de Blasio are potential 2020 challengers to Trump.

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