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Immigration and Border Security Senate rejects two anti-immigrant bills before going out on recess By Joshua Breisblatt 30 Photo: Nicolas Raymond Senate defeats cloture on motions to proceed—a motion to begin debate—on two “Sanctuary City” bills sponsored by Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA) and Senator Ted Cruz (R- TX). Both bills take an enforcement-only approach to immigration reform and fail to address the nation’s outdated immigration laws or the need to enact comprehensive reforms. Senator Toomey’s “Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act” (S. 3100) literally transforms state and local law enforcement officers into federal immigration enforcement agents and distracts from their ability to protect and serve their local community. The bill also attempts to punish these so-called sanctuary jurisdictions by taking away millions of dollars in federal funding for programs that make communities stronger, including the Community Development Block Grant from any city, state or county that does not fully comply with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detainers and notification requests. Senator Cruz’s bill, the “Stop Illegal Reentry Act” (S. 2193), would increase mandatory minimums for individuals convicted of “illegal reentry” into the United States. The term “sanctuary city” is often used incorrectly to describe a trust act or community policing policy that limits entanglement between local police and federal immigration authorities. These policies, in fact, make communities safer and increase communication between police and residents without imposing any restrictions on federal immigration agents in carrying out their job of enforcing immigration laws. Tom Manger, Chief of Police for Montgomery County and President of the Major Cities Chiefs Association, supports community policing policies that place limits on how local law enforcement is asked to enforce federal immigration laws. He said: “To do our job we must have the trust and respect of the communities we serve. We fail if the public fears their police and will not come forward when we need them. Whether we seek to stop child predators, drug dealers, rapists or robbers –we need the full cooperation of victims and witness. Cooperation is not forthcoming from persons who see their police as immigration agents. When immigrants come to view their local police and sheriffs with distrust because they fear de- More on page 44
Who wins if Donald Trump’s views on immigration policy are accepted by voters in November? By Wendy Felix Historically, America has done well when everyone works together towards common goals that pool our collective strengths. We have built a great nation, and much of our success continues to derive from the fact that we are a nation that welcomes and integrates people from around the world. Yet, most of Mr. Trump’s speech at the Republic National Convention on Thursday night sought to convince all who were listening that none of that history is true, and Americans are losing because someone else is taking something from them, including immigrants. Trump once again cast the foreign-born as a grave threat to natives, and he continues to blame them for unemployment and crime and proposes that anything short of mass expulsion of undocumented immigrants is tantamount to ignoring the rule of law. He also cast immigration reform as “amnesty.” Trump’s now well-established views on immigration policy are not only unsupported by the facts, but they are dangerous as well. If Trump’s immigration policies were ever implemented, they would have devastating impacts on American society, the economy, and our standing in the world. Oddly for a businessman, Trump’s view of the American economy is that it is finite and cannot be grown when more workers, taxpayers, and consumers are added to it. It is nonsensical to assert that the economic growth attributed to immigrants (as found in numerous studies) over the years does not in any way benefit native-born workers who participate in the same economy. The Republican nominee also 31 Photo: Courtesy of Disney continues his crusade to cast all immigrants as criminals even when there is abundant evidence that immigration is not linked to higher crime rates and hasn’t been for the past century. The truth is, the vast majority of Americans disagree that immigrants are the source of our problems, and a majority from both political parties support a more generous and pragmatic approach towards immigration policy. Yet, Trump’s commitment to his uninformed views on immigration remains strong. The fact that he believes natives only do well when immigrants are removed from the country demonstrates not only that he is out of touch with the majority of Americans, but that he is a bad student of history and economics and is willing to blindly pursue policies that play well politically among a small fringe group of his supporters. Trump’s immigration policies, if implemented, will make losers of us all.