GOP senators introduce resolution endorsing ICE
© Greg Nash

GOP senators are going on offense in supporting U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) while slamming calls on the left to abolish the agency.

More than 30 Republican senators this week submitted a resolution, spearheaded by GOP Sen. John KennedyJohn Neely KennedyMORE (La.), expressing support for ICE and knocking a push by some progressives who want to dismantle the agency.

Kennedy said calls to abolish ICE were "unthinkable."

“I am deeply troubled by the Democrats’ reckless calls to abolish ICE.  Eliminating ICE shows a blatant disregard for the welfare of the American people and our nation’s immigration laws,” he said. 

"Calls to abolish ICE not only disregard our immigration laws and give implicit license to those who want to enter our country illegally, they also smear the heroic sacrifices of ICE agents and put people at risk, especially in border states like Texas," added Sen. Ted CruzRafael (Ted) Edward CruzGroup aiming to draft Beto O’Rourke unveils first 2020 video Howard Dean looking for a 'younger, newer' Democratic nominee in 2020 Congress can stop the war on science MORE (R-Texas).

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The resolution in support of the agency comes as the push to nix ICE has gained steam among the party’s resurgent liberal base in response President TrumpDonald John TrumpCoast Guard chief: 'Unacceptable' that service members must rely on food pantries, donations amid shutdown Dem lawmaker apologizes after saying it's never been legal in US to force people to work for free Grassley to hold drug pricing hearing MORE’s "zero tolerance" immigration policies, which led to the separation of thousands of immigrant families along the U.S.-Mexico border.

A group of liberal House Democrats on Thursday introduced legislation to abolish ICE and shift the bureau's responsibilities to other federal agencies.

The Senate resolution offers support for ICE officials, members of the military and law enforcement. It would also formally denounce calls to abolish ICE.

Senators, in the resolution, call the progressive rhetoric "an insult to the heroic law enforcement officers of ICE" that would allow "countless illegal aliens who could pose a threat to public safety" including those that "pose a terrorist threat"and illegal drugs to enter the the United States.

"Abolishing ICE would allow dangerous criminal aliens, including violent and ruthless members of the MS-13 gang, to remain in communities in the United States," the resolution adds. 

In addition to Kennedy and Cruz, GOP Sens. Tom CottonThomas (Tom) Bryant CottonOn The Money: Shutdown Day 26 | Pelosi calls on Trump to delay State of the Union | Cites 'security concerns' | DHS chief says they can handle security | Waters lays out agenda | Senate rejects effort to block Trump on Russia sanctions Senate rejects effort to block Trump on Russia sanctions Overnight Defense: Trump faces blowback over report he discussed leaving NATO | Pentagon extends mission on border | Senate advances measure bucking Trump on Russia sanctions MORE (Ark.), David Perdue (Ga.), Chuck GrassleyCharles (Chuck) Ernest GrassleyGrassley to hold drug pricing hearing Overnight Health Care: HHS chief refuses to testify on family separations | Grassley to test GOP on lowering drug prices | PhRMA spends record on lobbying in 2018 Congress should stop tariff power grab, bring balance to US trade policy MORE (Iowa), John CornynJohn CornynGraham angers Dems by digging into Clinton, Obama controversies Trump tells GOP senators he’s sticking to Syria and Afghanistan pullout  Texas governor, top lawmakers tell Trump not to use hurricane relief funds to build border wall MORE (Texas), Mike RoundsMarion (Mike) Michael RoundsGrassley to test GOP on lowering drug prices Trump tells GOP senators he’s sticking to Syria and Afghanistan pullout  Senators look for possible way to end shutdown MORE(S.D.), Bill CassidyWilliam (Bill) Morgan CassidyMnuchin meets with Senate GOP to shore up ranks on Russia sanctions vote Trump on declaring national emergency: 'Not going to do it so fast' Acosta mocked for border reporting: 'Exactly – walls work!' MORE (La.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (Miss.), Jim InhofeJames (Jim) Mountain InhofePressure mounts for Trump to reconsider Syria withdrawal Dems express alarm at Trump missile defense plans Dem senator expresses concern over acting EPA chief's 'speedy promotion' MORE (Okla.), Roy BluntRoy Dean BluntMcConnell: Senate won't override Trump veto on shutdown fight Senate immigration talks fall apart Emergency declaration option for wall tests GOP MORE (Mo.), Thom TillisThomas (Thom) Roland TillisGraham angers Dems by digging into Clinton, Obama controversies Centrist efforts to convince Trump to end shutdown falter GOP reasserts NATO support after report on Trump’s wavering MORE (N.C.), Steve DainesSteven (Steve) David DainesOvernight Health Care: Dem chair plans hearing on Medicare for all | Senate GOP talks drug prices with Trump health chief | PhRMA CEO hopeful Trump reverses course on controversial pricing proposal On The Money: Shutdown Day 26 | Pelosi calls on Trump to delay State of the Union | Cites 'security concerns' | DHS chief says they can handle security | Waters lays out agenda | Senate rejects effort to block Trump on Russia sanctions Senate rejects effort to block Trump on Russia sanctions MORE (Mont.), Dean HellerDean Arthur HellerOregon Dem top recipient of 2018 marijuana industry money, study finds Trump’s shifting Cabinet to introduce new faces Trump's most memorable insults and nicknames of 2018 MORE (Nev.), Mike LeeMichael (Mike) Shumway LeeHillicon Valley: Trump AG pick signals new scrutiny on tech giants | Wireless providers in new privacy storm | SEC brings charges in agency hack | Facebook to invest 0M in local news AG pick Barr wants closer scrutiny of Silicon Valley 'behemoths' Grassroots political participation is under attack in Utah and GOP is fighting back MORE (Utah) and Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonCongress sends bill renewing anti-terrorism program to Trump The Hill's Morning Report — Shutdown fallout — economic distress Hillicon Valley: Republicans demand answers from mobile carriers on data practices | Top carriers to stop selling location data | DOJ probing Huawei | T-Mobile execs stayed at Trump hotel as merger awaited approval MORE (Wis.), John BoozmanJohn Nichols BoozmanOn The Money: Shutdown Day 26 | Pelosi calls on Trump to delay State of the Union | Cites 'security concerns' | DHS chief says they can handle security | Waters lays out agenda | Senate rejects effort to block Trump on Russia sanctions Senate rejects effort to block Trump on Russia sanctions Overnight Defense: Trump faces blowback over report he discussed leaving NATO | Pentagon extends mission on border | Senate advances measure bucking Trump on Russia sanctions MORE (Ark.), John BarrassoJohn Anthony BarrassoSenate Republicans eye rules change to speed Trump nominees Overnight Energy: Wheeler weathers climate criticism at confirmation hearing | Dems want Interior to stop drilling work during shutdown | 2018 was hottest year for oceans Dems blast EPA nominee at confirmation hearing MORE (Wyo.), Joni ErnstJoni Kay ErnstTrump tells GOP senators he’s sticking to Syria and Afghanistan pullout  McConnell: Senate will not recess if government still shutdown Barr calls for 'barrier system' on border MORE (Iowa), James LankfordJames Paul LankfordThis week: Congress heading in opposite directions on shutdown plans Senate GOP eyes 'nuclear option' for Trump nominees GOP senator calls Trump immigration offer a 'straw man proposal' not meant to become law MORE (Okla.), Mike CrapoMichael (Mike) Dean CrapoOvernight Health Care: HHS chief refuses to testify on family separations | Grassley to test GOP on lowering drug prices | PhRMA spends record on lobbying in 2018 Senate advances measure bucking Trump on Russia sanctions Deutsche Bank targeted by Dems over Trump ties MORE (Idaho), John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneRove warns Senate GOP: Don't put only focus on base Leaders nix recess with no shutdown deal in sight Senate advances measure bucking Trump on Russia sanctions MORE (S.D.), Pat RobertsCharles (Pat) Patrick RobertsThe Hill's Morning Report — Trump’s new immigration plan faces uphill battle in Senate Grassley to test GOP on lowering drug prices Pompeo taking meeting about running for Kansas Senate seat: report MORE (Kansas), Deb FischerDebra (Deb) Strobel FischerErnst elected to Senate GOP leadership This week: Congress starts lame-duck with leadership fight Senate GOP readies for leadership reshuffle MORE (Neb.), Orrin HatchOrrin Grant HatchPhRMA CEO 'hopeful' Trump officials will back down on drug pricing move Live coverage: Trump AG pick grilled on Mueller probe at confirmation hearing Trump praises RNC chairwoman after she criticizes her uncle Mitt Romney MORE (Utah), Jim RischJames (Jim) Elroy RischSen. Risch has unique chance to guide Trump on foreign policy Pressure mounts for Trump to reconsider Syria withdrawal Congress poised to push back at Trump on Saudi Arabia, Syria MORE (Idaho), Roger WickerRoger Frederick WickerOvernight Health Care: Dem chair plans hearing on Medicare for all | Senate GOP talks drug prices with Trump health chief | PhRMA CEO hopeful Trump reverses course on controversial pricing proposal Mobile providers at center of privacy storm The Memo: Trump moves to brink of emergency declaration MORE (Miss.), Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsGOP seeks to change narrative in shutdown fight Trump pitches new plan to reopen government amid Dem pushback The Memo: Concern over shutdown grows in Trump World MORE (Maine), Tim ScottTimothy (Tim) Eugene ScottMellman: Lynching and defective representation If Republicans rebuked Steve King, they must challenge Donald Trump McConnell rebukes Steve King over white nationalist comments MORE (S.C.), Johnny IsaksonJohn (Johnny) Hardy IsaksonOn The Money: Shutdown Day 27 | Trump fires back at Pelosi by canceling her foreign travel | Dems blast 'petty' move | Trump also cancels delegation to Davos | House votes to disapprove of Trump lifting Russia sanction Leaders nix recess with no shutdown deal in sight Senators offer measure naming Saudi crown prince 'responsible' for Khashoggi slaying MORE (Ga.) and Shelly Moore Capito (W.Va.) are supporting the resolution.

Updated: 5:47 p.m.