Ban on Sanctuary Cities Protecting Illegal Aliens Advances in Florida

Thursday, April 25, 2019
By Paul Martin

24 Apr 2019

A plan to ban sanctuary cities — which shield criminal illegal aliens from deportation — has been advanced in the Florida state House after initially being pushed by Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R).

On Wednesday, the Florida state House passed DeSantis’s plan to ban sanctuary jurisdictions across the state. Every Democrat state representative opposed the sanctuary city ban, as well as Republican state Reps. Vance Aloupis of Miami and Rene Plasencia of Orlando.

The sanctuary city ban comes with strict enforcement measures to ensure that localities and counties do not impose sanctuary policies that keep arrested and charged illegal aliens from being turned over the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency.

Those enforcement measures include allowing state officials to remove local authorities or local elected officials from office should they implement sanctuary policies to protect criminal illegal aliens. The plan also includes a fine of $5,000 that the state can impose on a jurisdiction for every day that they have a sanctuary policy in place.

The Florida state Senate bill to ban sanctuary cities is similar, but comes with fewer enforcement mechanisms. Rather than fining a jurisdiction or removing a sanctuary city elected official from office, the state Senate plan allows the state attorney general to file a civil action suit against a sanctuary city.

Should Florida implement a sanctuary city ban, they will be only the second state with one of the largest foreign-born populations in the country to do so. The first state with a significant foreign-born population to ban sanctuary cities was Texas last year.

Today, Florida has the fourth largest foreign-born population in the county with more than 4.1 million illegal aliens, legal immigrants, and foreign-born naturalized citizens. California, Texas, and New York continue to have the largest foreign-born populations in the county. California, a sanctuary state, has almost as many foreign-born residents as New York, Texas, and Florida combined, with more than 10.5 million illegal aliens, legal residents, and foreign-born naturalized citizens living in the state.

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