Rashida Tlaib Praises Civil Disobedience Protests Over Illegal Immigrant Deportations

Rep. Rashida Tlaib (D-MI) praised activists for attempting to shut down an international thoroughfare on Wednesday while protesting against American immigration policy.

“So proud of our young people taking action to send a clear message to the presidential candidates that inhumane immigration policies [and] deportations must end,” Tlaib said in response to a demonstration held just hours before the second Democratic primary debate.

During the demonstration, protesters attempted to block the Detroit-Windsor Tunnel in order to bring awareness to the American immigration policy, which separates children from accompanying adults after families illegally cross over the U.S. border. Movimiento Cosecha, the group that organized the protest, was also calling for an end to all deportations.

The Detroit-Windsor Tunnel, however, connects the city of Detroit with Windsor, Ontario. It is the second busiest crossing between the United States and Canada.

“A vague commitment to support immigration reform is an empty promise that we cannot accept,” Carlos Rojas, a Movimiento Cosecha spokesman, wrote in a statement. “The immigrant community has learned this lesson and we will not let candidates get away with another round of empty promises.”

“We need to know that candidates are serious about solving the daily crisis undocumented workers and families have been facing for decades,” Rojas continued. “That means putting an immediate end to all detention and deportations on their first day in office.”

The protest took place only miles from the venue that would hold the 2020 Democratic presidential debate hours later. The group condemned past presidents — both Democrat and Republican — for deportations and further urged Democratic candidates to immediately legalize of all illegal immigrants if elected to the presidency.