California Senate Republican Leader Responds to Legislature's Approval of "Sanctuary State" Bill


California is poised to become a so-called "sanctuary state" after its legislature passed a bill Saturday that would establish new protections for people who are in the country illegally and send a clear signal of defiance against the Trump administration's tough approach to immigration enforcement.

Senate Bill 54 will place limitations on how state and local law enforcement officials can communicate and coordinate with federal immigration authorities.

State legislators approved a measure early Saturday morning that would make California a sanctuary state.

The Assembly's 49-25 vote sets up a vote in the Senate later Friday.

Shortly after Trump won election last fall, de León's staff invited several immigration lawyers to join a conference call and asked them to bring ideas that were considered politically infeasible under the Obama administration back to the table in California. The state's Democratic governor, Jerry Brown, is expected to sign off on the bill, which he and the senator negotiated over at great length regarding certain amendments.

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The changes did not mollify U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Acting Director Thomas Homan, who said the bill will deliberately destruct immigration laws and shelter criminals.

Multiple cities have sought to defy President Trump's immigration enforcement policies, which require that state and local communities allow federal immigration access to detention facilities and provide 48 hours notice before they release an illegal alien wanted by federal authorities. The compromise helped shift the Police Chiefs Association's stance to "neutral".

"Now, more than ever, it is imperative that California law clearly distinguish state and local law enforcement officers from federal deportation agents", said Pasquarella.

A federal judge in Chicago ruled Friday that Attorney General Jeff Sessions can not follow through with his threat to withhold public safety grant money to so-called sanctuary cities for refusing his order to impose tough immigration policies. Assemblyman James Gallagher, R-Yuba City, said the bill would create "only a sanctuary for criminals".

The organization put out a release earlier this week, saying that "California's front-line law enforcement officers do not now engage in, and have no intention of engaging in, immigration enforcement in the field".