Wednesday, September 30, 2020

Obama Advisers Urge Veto of Anti-Sanctuary City Bill

The advisers of President Obama have recommended that he veto the Stop Sanctuary Policies and Protect Americans Act (S. 2146), which would at once punish cities and jurisdictions not in compliance with federal laws as they relate to a detained undocumented immigrant, and would enact a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in jail for undocumented immigrants who re-enter the U.S. as previously convicted criminals. The controversial legislation authored by Sen. David Vitter (R-LA) tackles the heavily politicized concept of sanctuary cities, and takes the Senate’s 2013 immigration reform bill to a new, fear-inciting level.

“Under the proposal by Sen. Vitter, communities would be forced to choose between building trust with immigrants or maintaining grants for programs that help low — and moderate — income families and seniors,” said Marielena Hincapié, executive director of the National Immigration Law Center. “Before they vote, senators should remember it is wrong to play with the lives of real people, that they should not be used as chips in the political game of anti-immigrant politics.”

The Obama administration has called Sen. Vitter’s bill incomplete, failing to offer the comprehensive reform while building a new lane of enforcement measures, rather than building off of existing efforts to strengthen border security, streamline legal immigration, and offer a clear path to citizenship, as supported by the President. Sen. Vitter’s bill was drafted in response to the death of Kathryn Steinle, the San Francisco woman allegedly shot and killed by an undocumented immigrant previously deported by the U.S. five separate times.

“Like the disgusting and outrageous language championed by Donald Trump, this legislation paints all immigrants as ‘criminals and rapists,’” Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, said on the Senate floor Monday.

The bill was filibustered by Senate Democrats, but currently boasts the endorsements of two Republican presidential candidates, Sens. Ted Cruz and Marco Rubio.

[Latin Post]; [CBS News]