Tuesday night, local activist Sarahy Garcia confronted Beto O’Rourke about his stance on abolishing ICE. Before she was visibly harassed by some audience members, he responded with:

“So don’t lecture me about the border and immigrants and things that we need to do. I’m doing everything that I can right now and I will continue to do everything that I can.” 

He mentions that he is doing and will continue to do everything he can regarding this issue, but he does not take a firm stand in lining himself with abolishing ICE.

Why? As a current representative for El Paso, Hispanics and Latinos of any race account for almost 81 percent of the city’s population.

ICE has a handbook on how to strip citizenship from naturalized Americans, per a report from The Intercept.

Why wouldn’t O’Rourke stand firmly against this organization on behalf of the people he currently represents let alone the rest of Texas?

Robert Francis O’Rourke was not eligible to join the Congressional Hispanic Caucus in 2024 for the simple fact that he is not Hispanic. Robert Francis O’Rourke uses “Beto” to pander to the Hispanic demographic the same way Rafael Edward Cruz uses “Ted” to pander the white demographic.

Sure, O’Rourke is not taking corporate or PAC money in his run for Senate, however, he is still beholden to his previous campaign donors as he is still serving as U.S. Representative for Texas’s 16th congressional district.

His campaign donors for that congressional seat include his top contributor, a pro-Israel non-profit, J Street, contributing a total of $125,538 over the course of his political career. You can read O’Rourke’s piece on US – Israel Relations here

O’Rourke received $81,082 over the course of his political career from a real estate investment conglomerate called Hunt Companies, who donate far more to Republicans than Democrats. Why would a Republican donor be contributing to a Democrat?

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Last but not least, he has received $31,098 over the course of his political career from AT&T. Aside from the obvious telecommunications ties, AT&T funds the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC). It was ALEC that passed the “Show Me Your Papers” law SB 1070 in Arizona, and that bill is similar to Texas’s SB4.

Because of these ties and many more you can find here, and the fact that he is still serving as a congressional representative you’re not going to hear O’Rourke firmly align himself with #AbolishIce, Medicare for All, or any other serious progressive issues.

O’Rourke still hasn’t co-sponsored HR 676 - Expanded & Improved Medicare For All Act. Tenet Healthcare contributed $19,400 to his campaigns and Emerus, another healthcare affiliate, contributed $32,426.

Don’t let his corporate-free campaign for Senate fool you, he is still serving as U.S. Representative for Texas’s 16th congressional district backed by the corporate donors that put him there. If he loses the Senate race to Cruz, he’s going to want to keep his congressional seat.

Beto O’Rourke is not going to willingly stand behind the #AbolishICE movement or firmly stand behind the progressive platform: You’re going to have to apply pressure.