After years of challenging the actions and authority of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, the ACLU Monday called for Congress to dismantle the agency and break it into smaller parts.
"Its dysfunction is one of the Beltway's worst kept secrets," Anthony Romero, executive director of the ACLU, wrote in an op-ed. "DHS' overbroad mandate and unchecked powers have turned it into a tinderbox, now ignited by a president willing to trample on the constitutional limits of presidential powers."
Dismantling DHS, breaking it apart into various federal agencies, and shrinking its federal budget will allow for more effective oversight, accountability and public transparency. https://t.co/OCEhylML0t— ACLU (@ACLU) August 10, 2020
"The very premise of a 'homeland security' bureaucracy is chilling and ought to be questioned," Romero wrote in USA Today. Noting that DHS is an "ineffective superagency" composed of 22 different agencies, Romero argued that breaking up the department would "allow for more effective oversight, accountability, and public transparency."
Portland, which is out of control, should finally, after almost 3 months, bring in the National Guard. The Mayor and Governor are putting people’s lives at risk. They will be held responsible. The Guard is ready to act immediately. The Courthouse is secured by Homeland!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 10, 2020
"Years of chaos and impunity make a clear case for the dismantling of DHS," Romero wrote. "President Trump's use of DHS as his personal militia should be enough to start a meaningful bipartisan debate about DHS' future."
"If there is one thing we have learned from the authoritarianism on display in Portland, it's that we have to remove the loaded weapon that sits on the proverbial coffee table in the Oval Office," he concluded.