SACRAMENTO (CBS / AP) — Legislative Democrats in California have advanced a bill that would provide statewide sanctuary for immigrants by restricting local law enforcement from cooperating with federal immigration authorities.

The measure marks California Democrats’ first formal effort to resist President Donald Trump’s immigration policies.

Democratic lawmakers in Sacramento were on a fast track to advance legislation aimed at protecting immigrants at risk of deportation due to Trump’s policies.

“Immigration authorities will arguably be able to target every undocumented immigrant in California,” said State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson. “We want to make sure that people are here for all the right reasons are able to stay here.”

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The Senate Public Safety Committee approved SB54 in a 5-2 party-line vote on Tuesday – less than a week after Trump signed an order threatening to withdraw some federal grants from established sanctuary cities.

Senate Bill 54 would prevent local law enforcement statewide from using resources to investigate, interrogate, detain, detect, report or arrest persons for immigration enforcement purposes.

Democrats say the legislation is necessary to prevent fear of deportation in families with members living in California without authorization.

The California Sheriffs Association released a statement Tuesday opposing SB 54, saying it would limit the ability of law enforcement agencies to cooperate with federal authorities on immigration matters.

Cory Salzillo of the California State Sheriffs’ Association says law enforcement officers at all levels of government must work together to keep people safe.

The legislation now goes to the Senate Appropriations Committee.

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Comments (30)
  1. Sam Starfas says:

    Again, I can’t post a pro Trump comment or KPIX won’t post.

    KPIX does NOT support free speech!

    1. I did too and it hasn’t appeared.

    2. Multiple shame shame shame on you KPIX. You will go down in history as aiding the descent of California into anarchy and chaos – or organized Shariah Law. Get a grip, Californians.

  2. San Francisco had filed a law suit challenging the constitutionality of President Trump’s executive order seeking to cut off funds for sanctuary cities.

    Although the order is probably unconstitutional, as least it part, it may be difficult if not impossible for sanctuary cities such as San Francisco to get a court to rule on these issues, especially in a timely manner, for a number of reasons.

    The first is the administrative law principle known as “ripeness,” which says that courts should not address legal issues until they are ripe – sufficiently developed, with the facts clear enough, for a court to rule knowledgeably and authoritatively. This applies most strictly when constitutional issues are raised.

    Here, since the very meaning of the order, its applicability to different so-called sanctuary activities, and how federal officials will interpret and seek to enforce it are all unclear, courts may well decide that the issues – especially those related to constitutionality – are just not yet ripe enough for adjudication.

    A second administrative law doctrine, “exhaustion of administrative remedies,” provides that courts should not decide legal issues unless and until plaintiffs exhaust whatever administrative remedies they may have before and within the agency itself.

    For example, if the agency provides for hearings, these hearing should occur, and the agency at the highest level should then render a final decision, before a court decides important legal issues.

    Here, each threatened city almost certainly will be entitled to a hearing before any funds are finally terminated, so cities may have to participate in such a hearing before they can get relief from a court.

    However, despite their claims now to the contrary, many cities might be unwilling to have this Sword of Damocles hanging over their heads while they go though a lengthy administrative process, often with their very survival hanging in the balance, simply to protect people illegally in the country.

    That means that Trump’s order is likely to be very effective even if it is unconstitutional. Entities faced with possible financial devastation from funds being cut off are rarely willing to take a risk, and often find that it is much easier to simply comply than to take a chance and fight.

    Indeed, this effect is so well known that it goes by the name “regulation by raised eyebrow” – i.e., an agency need do nothing more than suggest possible adverse consequences, and those subject to a possible sanction all too often comply immediately. This has been true regarding challenges before the FCC in which Banzhaf has participated, with stations capitulating even when the action was later ruled invalid.

    Certainly this has also proven to be true with regard to colleges which have spent hundreds of millions of dollars to set up programs to deal with rape, based solely upon mere suggestions by the Department of Education, with no more than an implied threat to their funding.

    This falls far short of the explicit threat of loss of funding coming directly from the president in the sanctuary cities executive order.

    Already Florida’s largest county, Miami-Dade, long known for welcoming immigrants, has ordered jails there to “fully cooperate” with Trump’s order, and others appear to be considering it.

    In short, even if the executive order is in fact unconstitutional, no court may ever be able to make that ruling, and many cities may comply anyhow.


  3. Molly Mogan says:

    I tried to post a comment citing this as THE MOST dangerous piece of legislation devised to take down California – using factual date – and it did not get posted. SHAME on the fascist KCBS news website for your censorship. Indeed, this is becoming a Nazi state.