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Thread: Sanctuary cities immigration debate likely in 2018 Iowa Legislature

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  1. #1
    Senior Member lorrie's Avatar
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    Sanctuary cities immigration debate likely in 2018 Iowa Legislature

    Sanctuary cities immigration debate likely in 2018 Iowa Legislature

    | Updated 7:01 p.m. CT Dec. 15, 2017



    owa's cities and counties would be banned from enacting "sanctuary" policies that provide safe havens for undocumented immigrants under a bill that appears headed for a contentious debate in the 2018 Iowa Legislature.The Iowa Senate approved Senate File 481 near the close of the 2017 session, sending the measure to the House, where it remains alive for consideration in the upcoming session.

    Rep. Steven Holt, R-Denison, told the Des Moines Register he is optimistic about the bill's chances to win final approval, which would send the measure to Gov. Kim Reynolds, who appears likely to sign it. The legislation won Senate passage in April on a 32-15 vote with all Republicans present voting yes and four Democrats joining them. The 2018 session convenes Jan. 8.

    "This really crosses party lines. It's a common-sense issue for a lot of people," Holt said. "We are a nation of laws. We have to cooperate on the state level with the federal government, and vice versa, in the enforcement of our laws. There is a lot of support for it in the House, but we will have to see what happens."

    The Iowa legislation would bar a local government from receiving state funds if the provisions were violated. This includes requiring law enforcement agencies to comply with federal immigration detainer requests for people in their custody. In addition, the bill would prohibit local governments from discouraging local law enforcement officers or others from activities related to enforcing immigration laws.

    Efforts by President Donald Trump's administration to withhold federal funding to sanctuary cities nationally have been blocked by federal judges in Illinois and California. In addition, parts of a state law in Texas addressing the issue have been put on hold in the federal courts. But the final say on sanctuary cities could ultimately be determined by the U.S. Supreme Court.

    Joe Enriquez Henry of Des Moines, national vice president of the League of United Latin American Cities, said his organization is "totally against" the measure being considered in Iowa. He believes it targets Latino immigrants and is being used by its proponents to score political points.

    "It's unconstitutional to require local law enforcement to do the work of the federal government," Henry said. "You can't deputize local law enforcement to profile citizens, and at the end of the day undocumented immigrants are like any other citizens. You cannot treat someone differently because they are undocumented."

    Last year's debate in the Legislature

    State Sen. Julian Garrett, R-Indianola, the floor manager of the Senate bill, said the vast majority of Iowa cities and counties currently cooperate with federal immigration officials. But he said there are a few that don't and are harboring immigrant criminals who are "not just an average person out on the street" who is undocumented. The goal of the legislation is to create a sanction serious enough that local governments comply with the law, he said.

    During last session's debate, Garrett pointed to a Harvard-Harris Poll released in February that said 80 percent of voters nationally said authorities should have to comply with the law by reporting to federal agents the illegal status of immigrants they come into contact with.

    However, a host of organizations registered last session against the Senate bill, including the Iowa League of Cities, Iowa State Bar Association, Iowa Police Chiefs Association, Iowa County Attorneys Association, Interfaith Alliance of Iowa, American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa, Iowa Catholic Conference, Iowa Annual Conference of the United Methodist Church, and others. The only organization registered in support was the Iowa Minuteman Civil Defense Corps.

    According to the Pew Research Center, there were an estimated 40,000 undocumented immigrants of all ages living in Iowa in 2014.

    Madeline Cano, a community organizer with the Iowa Citizens for Community Improvement organization that works with immigrants, describes the Senate bill as part of a wave of legislation seen across the country that is consistent with more restrictive immigration policy goals of the Trump administration.

    "I think this would hurt our communities and it would put public safety at risk by creating mass distrust, not only of police and law enforcement and public officials in general, but neighbor to neighbor," Cano said. "It promotes more anxiety and fear and xenophobia. It is just problematic altogether."

    Reynolds was asked during a news conference in September if she will support the sanctuary cities bill approved by the Iowa Senate and she replied, "Yes."

    "I believe that with the limited resources that we have that we should focus on illegal immigrants who have committed a crime. They are illegal and they have chosen to break the law and let’s start there," Reynolds said at the time.

    However, Reynolds also signaled support for immigration reform, enforcing the nation's borders while streamlining the immigration process and trying to find a path toward citizenship for people who have spent most of their lives working. She emphasized that Iowa businesses are struggling to find workers.

    National cases draw attention


    The sanctuary issue has attracted attention nationally because of the death of Kathryn Steinle, 32, who died in July 2015 in San Francisco after being shot by a Mexican national unlawfully residing in the United States. Trump cited the woman's death and San Francisco's status as a sanctuary city during his presidential campaign.

    Jose Inez Garcia Zarate, a Mexican national who had previously been deported from the U.S. five times and had been convicted of seven felonies, was acquitted in November of all murder and manslaughter charges. He was convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

    The death of Sarah Root, 22, of Council Bluffs, in a January 2016 car accident involving an undocumented immigrant, has also stoked controversy and has been cited by Trump. Root died just 16 hours after she had graduated summa cum laude from Bellevue University, south of Omaha. Eswin G. Mejia, 19, the man accused of driving drunk and causing the crash, was in the U.S. illegally and was charged with motor vehicle homicide. He fled after posting bond and hasn't been found since.

    In Iowa, some of the debate on the issue has focused on Iowa City, where local officials adopted a resolution that would prevent city resources from being used to enforce federal immigration law absent a public safety threat. In addition, the Des Moines Public Schools have been supporting undocumented students, barring staff from asking about their immigration status and funneling federal inquiries through the superintendent's office and district attorney. But the measure appears to stops short of blocking the school district from working with immigration officials.

    Robert Ussery, who heads the Des Moines chapter of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corps, said he plans to lobby Iowa legislators for an even tougher anti-sanctuary bill.

    His organization's proposal would allow citizens who suffer damages because of sanctuary city policies to sue individual city council members, county sheriffs or police chiefs responsible for such decisions.

    https://www.desmoinesregister.com/st...ure/943644001/
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Beezer's Avatar
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    All States that cooperate with ICE...send in a couple hundred agents and do a SWEEP of the State.

    Load up all illegals AND their families and put them on a bus to the border!

    Process them on the way!
    NO DACA - NO AMNESTY - NO PATH TO STAY - LET WORK PERMITS EXPIRE
    DEPORT ALL ILLEGAL ALIENS WITHIN 24 HOURS
    END BIRTHRIGHT CITIZENSHIP!

  3. #3
    Senior Member Judy's Avatar
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    All states should ban "sanctuary cities" or "sanctuary" anywhere in their state of illegal alien fugitives. They are all fugitives. There should be no "safe place" in our country for them anywhere.
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