In-Depth: Sponsoring Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) introduced this bill to punish sanctuary cities
for preventing their law enforcement officers from cooperating with federal immigration officials:
"It is past time to act. This Friday will mark one year since Kate Steinle was gunned down by a repeat felon who was in the country illegally, and she died in her father's arms. I cannot imagine the pain that Kate's father must feel. Sadly, the Steinle family is not alone. The Obama administration has confirmed that sanctuary cities result in thousands of criminals being put back on the streets."
The Obama administration threatened to veto an earlier version of this legislation if it were to pass through Congress and arrive at his desk to be signed into law.
A Rasmussen poll released
on July 10, 2015 found that 62 percent of Americans believe the Dept.
of Justice (DOJ) should take legal action against sanctuary cities,
while 58 percent believe federal funding should be cut off to those
Of Note: Sanctuary cities in particular have long been controversial and grew in popularity during the 2000s — reaching a total of more than 200 cities or states with variations of the policy.
re-emerged in the news cycle in July 2015 in San Francisco after Kate Steinle's murder. San Francisco has been a sanctuary city since 1989, when an ordinance preventing local
authorities from assisting federal immigration enforcement was passed.
Learn more about the incident, the politics of the situation, and how
immigration cases have been handled in San Francisco here.
The federal government has also expressed frustration
with the sanctuary cities, as ICE officials are put in greater danger
by having to apprehend the undocumented immigrants at their home than if
they had been able to pick them up at the jail. Recently the agency has
begun tracking the number of “detainer” requests they have sent to
local authorities about immigrants they’ve arrest which are subsequently
refused, and the subject of the request allowed to go free.
However, the Director of ICE has expressed
skepticism that forcing sanctuary cities or states to cooperate with
federal immigration enforcement would be helpful, calling it a “highly
counterproductive step” that would “lead to more resistance and less
:Summary by Eric Revell
(Photo Credit: By U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Department of Homeland Security) - http://www.ice.gov/news/galleries/index.htm#tab_stories, Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=20745328)