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‘Sanctuary Cities’ Bill Floated in Senate

21 Jul

Sen. Chuck Grassley announced Tuesday that he will introduce legislation in an effort to counter the spread of so-called “sanctuary cities.”

At a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing where relatives of those killed by undocumented immigrants testified, the Iowa Republican said that his proposed bill would withhold certain federal funding for state and local entities if they refuse to work with the government on the holding and transferring of undocumented immigrants who have been convicted of crimes.

“No more people should die at the hands of those who break our laws just by being here. No more families should have to go through what our witnesses have experienced,” Grassley, the panel chairman, said.

Sanctuary cities are jurisdictions that shelter undocumented immigrants from federal immigration law enforcement.

Another provision of Grassley’s legislation is a mandatory minimum five-year prison sentence for those who enter the United States after being deported. This is supported by the parents of Kathryn Steinle, a San Francisco woman who was fatally shot earlier this month by a Mexican man who had previously been convicted of seven felonies and deported five times. Steinle’s father, Jim, testified at the hearing along with other relatives of those killed in similar situations.

“Unfortunately, due to un-jointed laws and basic incompetence of the government, the U.S. has suffered a self-inflicted wound in the murder of our daughter by the hand of a person that should have never been on the streets in this country,” he said.

Grassley described these murders committed by undocumented immigrants as “a direct result of the administration’s failure to deport criminals or its tolerance of sanctuary policies.”