President Joe Biden’s choice for Immigration and Customs Enforcement director, Ed Gonzalez, withdrew from consideration for the position over the weekend.
Gonzalez, who is currently the sheriff for Harris County, Texas, announced on his Twitter account that he notified the Biden administration of his decision.
1/5 On Sunday, I informed President Biden's administration that I am respectfully withdrawing from consideration for the post of Director of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
— Ed Gonzalez (@SheriffEd_HCSO) June 27, 2022
Want to guess why he did that?
Apparently, it’s due to the fact that allegations of domestic violence against him surfaced and played a part in stalling the confirmation process.
“I arrived at this decision after prayerfully considering what’s best for our nation, my family, and the people of Harris County who elected me to serve a second term as Sheriff,” Gonzalez said, according to a report from The Western Journal.
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“I am grateful to President Biden for the honor of nominating me, and I wish this administration well as it strives to overcome the paralyzing political gridlock that threatens far more than our nation’s border,” the sheriff added.
“Frankly, the dysfunction threatens America’s heart and soul,” Gonzalez said.
Gonzalez received Biden’s nomination back in April of 2021. Before he was picked to be the nominee for ICE director, Gonzalez had a reputation for criticizing former President Donald Trump’s immigration policies, which no doubt endeared him to Biden and his cronies.
While serving his first term as the sheriff in Harris County in 2017, Gonzalez decided to end his department’s collaboration with ICE, prohibiting his officers from working alongside federal law enforcement agencies in counter-illegal immigrant raids, according to a report published by the Houston Chronicle.
The move was controversial, to say the least.
Again, this is the kind of move that no doubt earned him some brownie points with Biden and other liberals at both the state and federal levels.
“I do not support #ICERaids that threaten to deport millions of undocumented immigrants, the vast majority of whom do not represent a threat to the U.S.,” Gonzalez wrote in a tweet posted to his account in 2019.
“The focus should always be on clear & immediate safety threats. Not others who are not threats,” the tweet continued.
The president had chosen a total of 542 nominees for the position, according to data gleaned from The Washington Post’s Biden Political Appointee Tracker.
However, Gonzalez’s nomination stalled soon after he was picked, as he became part of the 141 Biden nominees who had not yet been approved by the Senate.
“Gonzalez’s hostility toward immigration law enforcement had contributed to his nomination stalling,” the Western Journal reported.
“Although the Senate Homeland Security Committee had voted to advance Gonzalez’s nomination in August 2021, the nomination was not voted on by the Senate, Roll Call reported,” the report continued.
Earlier in the year, Biden’s administration had to resubmit Gonzalez’s nomination for that very reason, the outlet went on to say.
Republican Sen. James Lankford, back in March, revealed his concern over an alleged domestic violence incident involving Gonzalez and his wife. The Oklahoma senator then urged Democrats to delay the vote concerning the sheriff’s nomination.
“The senator cited an affidavit by a Houston police officer who noted that Gonzalez had become ‘physical or violent’ with his wife due to an adulterous affair, according to Roll Call. Subsequently, the vote over Gonzalez’s nomination was delayed,” the Western Journal said.
It didn’t take long for Biden and the rest of the administration to side with Gonzalez in the controversy, putting out a statement it claims came from Melissa Gonzalez, the sheriff’s wife, in which she denied the allegations altogether.
“Any suggestion that I filed or made a complaint against my husband is false and defamatory,” Mrs. Gonzalez remarked in the statement.
“To be clear, the assertions referenced in the affidavit, as they relate to me, my husband or my marriage, are completely false,” she added.
The Harris County sheriff’s decision to pull his name from consideration for the position of ICE director is a pretty big loss for the Biden team, who ran on immigration reform as part of his campaign platform in 2020.
And it’s a loss that comes as he’s already desperately trying to recover from skyrocketing gas prices, hikes in inflation, and a number of other challenges as time barrels faster than the speed of light toward the midterm elections this fall.