Louisiana Republicans Move to Punish ‘Sanctuary’ Cities

DAILY SIGNAL — Louisiana Republicans and the state’s attorney general are aiming to deter cities and localities from having “sanctuary” immigration policies by threatening to withhold funding from those that do.

While the designation of a “sanctuary city” is informal, it generally refers to jurisdictions where local officials refuse to fulfill requests by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) to hold onto suspected illegal immigrants who have been arrested for offenses unrelated to their immigration status.

“Officials who adopt policies like that put their communities at great risk,” state Rep. Valarie Hodges, a Republican, told The Daily Signal in an interview. “It’s contrary to common sense. What other country in the world has those kind of policies?”

By passing two bills earlier this month meant to punish jurisdictions that don’t comply with so-called “detainer” requests, the Louisiana House of Representatives, and its ally in this fight, Attorney General Jeff Landry, injected itself into a contentious debate over sanctuary policies that sprang last year after the murder of 32-year-old Kathryn Steinle in San Francisco.

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