Florida poised to ban 'sanctuary cities'

Elias Hubbard
January 13, 2018

"HB 9 is President Trump's immigration policy wrapped up into one bill, without a wall and without a Muslim ban", said Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, D-Orlando.

This is the third year in a row that the Republican-controlled House has passed a bill aimed at so-called sanctuary cities. Democrats and immigration advocates say the bill could lead to racial profiling and would force local police officers to get proof of immigration status from everyone they arrest.

Rep. Byron Donalds, R-Naples, said Trump's statements were "out of bounds", but he said the bill is about following federal immigration law.

During a private meeting, Trump used vulgar language about why the US should be accepting more immigrants from Haiti and African nations than from countries like Norway.

"Federal immigration law should be enforced and we should be a partner in that enforcement effort", Metz said. It's a remark Trump now denies making.

Alejandro's mother, 26-year-old Eugenia Echeverria of Orlando said she traveled from Central Florida last night anxious about the future for her youngest child and her other two children, ages 6 and 7.

In an early morning tweet Friday, Trump denied making the remarks but did not specify what he said at the meeting centered on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, the Obama-era policy that focused on children who are brought into the US illegally by their parents or guardians. "What was really tough was the outlandish proposal made - a big setback for DACA!"

After a rancorous debate that included sharp criticism of President Donald Trump's comments about certain countries, the Florida House on Friday passed a contentious bill created to crack down on cities and counties that don't comply with federal immigration authorities. Law enforcement agencies and local government entities would also be prohibited from adopting sanctuary policies.

"They're exhausted of seeing, year after year, anti-immigrant bills being introduced", said Julio Calderon, a campaign manager for the Florida Immigrant Coalition, as he stood in front of demonstrators hailing largely from South and Central Florida. "This bill is about following federal immigration law, not the whims of a president".

The bill, however, drew impassioned debate Thursday and Friday on the House floor.

Rep. Bob Cortes, R-Altamonte Springs, however, said he had no qualms about voting for the bill and was never pressured by Corcoran or House leadership.

"I don't see any court in this state or in this country upholding this piece of legislation", said Jacquet.

"Sanctuary cities are a threat to the safety of our communities", Corcoran has said on the measure".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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