Five of the Democratic presidential candidates took part in a presidential forum focusing on Latino issues at Los Angeles' California State University on Sunday.
One of the candidates, Julian Castro commented on the US customs and ICE: "culturally it is broken, [...] that in the way they do enforcement they have gone off the rails" adding that he would "reform [the] enforcement, "break it up and redo" their approach.
He assured that there would "always" be enforcement of US laws but that it can be done "in a smarter, more humane and more effective way than ICE."
"Latino voters that I speak to are extremely concerned about healthcare, about the direction of our economy, about immigration policy. And about something that's deeper than any individual policy issue, which is the way that people are being treated, singled out and told that they do not belong in this country," said Pete Buttigieg, who believes the US has "a crisis of belonging, fuelled by the behaviour of this president [US President Donald Trump]."
Presidential candidate Bernie Sanders stated hate crimes against "Latinos, hate crimes against people in the gay community, transgender community, African-American community. Antisemitism, against the Jewish community," has gone up since 2016 with crimes targeting Latinos increasing by 41 percent.
"That is what happens when you have a leader in this country who talks about hatred, talks about trying to divide us up. And talks about white nationalists being, maybe, good people," added Sanders.
Other candidates participating were hedge fund manager and philanthropist Tom Steyer as well as Senator Kamala Harris. During the forum a panel of journalists questioned the candidates on their policies and views while conversations were moderated by ABC7 anchor Marc Brown.