An entire state may become a sanctuary
California Legislature passes bill to limit cooperation with ICE
SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California Legislature passed a “sanctuary state” bill Saturday to protect immigrants without legal residency in the U.S., part of a broader push by Democrats to counter expanded deportation orders under the Trump administration.
The legislation by Democratic state Sen. Kevin de Leon, the most far-reaching of its kind in the country, would limit state and local law enforcement communication with federal immigration authorities and prevent officers from questioning and holding people for immigration violations.
After debate in both houses of the Legislature, staunch opposition from Republican sheriffs and threats from Trump administration officials against sanctuary cities, the bill was approved on a 27-11 vote along party lines. But the measure sent to Gov. Jerry Brown was a significant retreat from the version first introduced, the result of negotiations between Brown and de Leon in the final weeks of the legislative session.
On the Senate floor minutes before 2 a.m. Saturday, de Leon said the changes were reasonable.
“These amendments do not mean to erode the core mission of this measure, which is to protect hardworking families that have contributed greatly to our culture and the economy,” he said. “This is a measure that reflects the values of who we are as a great state.”
The California Values Act at first would have prohibited state and local law enforcement agencies from using any resources to hold, question or share information about people with federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents, unless they had violent or serious criminal convictions.
After the talks between de Leon and Brown, amendments to the bill made this week would allow federal immigration authorities to keep working with state corrections officials and to continue entering county jails to question immigrants.