California became the first sanctuary state last week, but Immigration and Customs Enforcement does not care.
ICE Acting Director Thomas Homan said his agency had “no choice” other than to apprehend illegal aliens in California work sites and neighborhoods despite Gov. Jerry Brown signing the sanctuary legislation.
The new law takes effect on January 1, 2018 and bars authorities from asking people about their legal status and prevents law enforcement from cooperating with the feds on immigration.
But Homan warned that the law might encourage illegal aliens to flock to the state.
“Ultimately, SB54 helps shield removable aliens from immigration enforcement and creates another magnet for more illegal immigration, all at the expense of the safety and security of the very people it purports to protect,” he said in a statement on the ICE website.
Brown issued a statement when he signed the law on Friday that conceded the law does not prevent ICE from operating in his state.
“This bill does not prevent or prohibit [ICE] or the Department of Homeland Security from doing their work in any way. They are free to use their own considerable resources to enforce federal immigration law in California,” Brown wrote, according to the Los Angeles Times. “[T]his bill strikes a balance that will protect public safety, while bringing a measure of comfort to those families who are now living in fear every day.”
People living in fear every day? People like Kate Steinle who was killed by a criminal illegal alien in California?
But if Brown thought his state’s law was going to stop ICE from enforcing immigration laws, he is mistaken.
“Despite the severe challenges that this law creates for ICE, we remain committed to our public safety mission and we will continue to do our sworn duty to seek out dangerous criminal aliens and other immigration violators. ICE seeks straightforward cooperation with all sheriffs and local elected officials. This misguided legislation will severely undermine those efforts,” he wrote.