The Corner

Democrats ♥ Criminal Aliens

ICE reports there are now 340 sanctuary jurisdictions, i.e., cities and states that protect criminal aliens from deportation by refusing to cooperate with ICE. These jurisdictions, including the whole state of California, are releasing about 1,000 criminal aliens each month back into their communities.

Senate Democrats this afternoon are likely to demonstrate that they are implacably opposed to even the most minimal immigration enforcement (in case you needed further demonstrations) by killing a bill that would curb this practice.

A bill by Senator David Vitter to rein in sanctuary cities is scheduled to be voted on at 2:15. This is technically a motion to proceed – whether to begin debate on the measure – but Democrats are expected to filibuster it. Which means rather than the needed 60 votes, it could get 59 votes, with Harry Reid permitting a handful of vulnerable members of his conference to pretend to support national borders, without those votes making any difference to the outcome.

My colleague Dan Cadman prepared a summary of the bill, and it’s actually pretty tame stuff, avoiding the broader issue of President Obama’s across-the-board suppression of immigration enforcement. It would cut off sanctuary cities from certain federal funds, which would be redistributed to cooperating jurisdictions. It offers limited immunity to state and local cops partnering with federal immigration authorities, so if the feds make a mistake, the liability would not fall on the locals. (This is necessary because of an ACLU campaign of predatory lawsuits, abetted by the Obama administration, against jurisdictions cooperating with ICE.) And the bill provides for mandatory minimum sentences for illegals who repeatedly infiltrate across the borders after having been formally deported (so-called Kate’s Law).

It’s almost unbelievable that these measures are considered controversial. You’d think everyone would support acting to stop nullification of federal law – regarding criminal aliens, mind you – but you would be wrong. All the Democratic candidates for president are in favor of shielding criminal aliens from deportation, even Webb. Harry Reid calls Vitter’s modest bill “vile,” “disgusting,” “outrageous,” and “the Donald Trump Act.”

If the vote turns out as expected, the Republican leadership and the presidential candidates need to paste this anti-borders vote on the forehead of every Democratic official. Whether the Stupid Party has the sense to do that remains to be seen.

Mark Krikorian, a nationally recognized expert on immigration issues, has served as Executive Director of the Center for Immigration Studies (CIS) since 1995.

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