Well, the debate is over. Florida is doing its part to enforce our immigration laws by banning the establishment of sanctuary cities. The bill is going to hit Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis’ desk and he’s expected to sign it into law. It was mostly party-line vote, but it wasn’t the smoothest of rides—and there are some key opposition groups, mainly from the business community that is worried about its economic impact. Once again, we see the cracks within the GOP on this issue of immigration enforcement, whereas business conservatives, speaking generally, are opposed to strict immigration laws because it kills their access to cheap labor. The Tampa Bay Times has more:
I thank the Florida Legislature for presenting me with a bill that upholds the rule of law and addresses sanctuary cities and counties in Florida. We are a stronger state when we protect our residents, foster safe communities and respect the work of law enforcement.— Ron DeSantis (@GovRonDeSantis) May 2, 2019
After a week of legislative back-and-forth and the stress of rapidly diminishing time weighing on both chambers, the bill to ban so-called “sanctuary cities” is headed to the governor’s desk.
The controversial bill’s passage comes after months and months of heightened emotional discourse, protests and deals made among stakeholders wishing to appease the Republican base.
Senate Bill 168 passed 22-18 in the Senate and 68-45 in the House.
Under the bill, local law enforcement and other state agencies would be required to honor federal law enforcement’s request for an “immigration detainer,” meaning a request that another law enforcement agency detains a person based on probable cause to believe that the person is a “removable alien” under federal immigration law. The bill would essentially make the “request” a requirement.
The path to passing a bill was not a straight one, as the state’s two chambers have jockeyed for days over what will be the final product — a feud typically reserved for closed-door negotiations.
In a statement Thursday night, he said he was thankful that the Legislature delivered on one of his biggest asks as governor.
“Earlier this year, I asked the Florida Legislature to present me with a bill this session that upholds the rule of law and addresses sanctuary cities and counties in Florida,” he said. “Local law enforcement agencies can and should work with the federal government to ensure that accountability and justice are one in our state.”
Business groups have also come out against the bill, citing the toll it would take on a state that relies on the labor immigrants provide and taxes they pay. American Business Immigration Coalition urged the governor to veto the bill in statement Thursday, co-signed by billionaire Miami healthcare magnate and prominent political booster Mike Fernandez and former Florida Republican Party Chairman Al Cardenas.
There's going to be a lawsuit from the bleeding heart Left. You can bet on that, until then--thank you, Gov. DeSantis for enforcing our immigration laws.