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Illinois’ GOP Governor Just Signed A Bill Helping Criminal Immigrants

Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a bill Monday that sharply curtails the ability of law enforcement officials across the state to detain criminal immigrants on behalf of federal authorities.

After months of deliberating over what to do with the so-called Illinois TRUST Act, the first-term Republican signaled last week that he would approve the measure, which effectively ends the practice of honoring Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) detention requests — commonly known as “detainers” — unless they are backed by a criminal warrant.

Rauner signed the bill at a crowded ceremony in Chicago’s Little Village neighborhood, the heart of the city’s Mexican-American community. Immigrant advocates celebrated the new law, calling it the “gold standard” for state protections against deportation, reports the Chicago Sun-Times.

“This bill will provide an unprecedented level of protection for Illinois’ half-million undocumented residents who could otherwise enter the deportation pipeline through any simple interaction with police, including a traffic violation or a call to report a crime,” said a joint statement from the Illinois Coalition for Immigrant and Refugee Rights, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, and the National Immigrant Justice Center.

Prior to Monday’s signing, Rauner had called the TRUST Act a “very reasonable” limit on the power of local authorities to enforce federal immigration laws. The bill prevents all state and local police from stopping, detaining or arresting someone based solely on the person’s immigration status. Those restrictions apply to ICE detainers, which are administrative requests to hold a criminal alien in jail for up to 48 hours in order to give ICE agents time to take the subject into custody.

The version of the TRUST Act signed by Rauner is scaled back from an original proposal that would have placed tighter restrictions on cooperation between local police and immigration authorities. Following input from law enforcement stakeholders, including the Illinois Association of Chiefs of Police, the bill was amended to allow for continued information sharing with federal agents. Language establishing “safe zones” — places such as schools, hospitals and courthouses — that would be off-limits to ICE agents was also scrubbed from the final version.

Opponents of the TRUST Act say it makes Illinois a sanctuary state and puts the state at risk for losing federal law enforcement grants. Attorney General Jeff Sessions attached new conditions to the Byrne Justice Assistance Grant program last month, requiring future applicants to give immigration agents unfettered access to jails and provide notice 48 hours in advance when a criminal alien is going to be released from custody.

The City of Chicago sued the Department of Justice (DOJ) over the new requirements earlier this month, but it is not immediately clear how the TRUST Act will affect Illinois’ eligibility for federal criminal justice grants. The state received just over $6.5 million in Byrne grants in Fiscal Year 2017, according to DOJ records.

When it comes to the acceptance of ICE detainers, the new Illinois law is actually less permissive than Chicago’s policy. City jail officials can honor administrative detention requests without a warrant if the subject is in the Chicago Police Department’s gang database.

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7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. robert g bernardini

    August 29, 2017 at 12:14 pm

    Cut off all Government funding to the state they have bankrupt themselves already and the upper middle class is leaving in record numbers . They have no real tax base left so they are turning the State into a Socialist Dump .While the CIA keeps pouring the drugs in and the Black community bought into the Obama lies of hope and change were abandoned . Generational welfare and drug dealing is what they are left with . Zionist Puppet master Rahm Emanuel and Barry Soetoro Obama who was raised with Socialist father and promoted by Bill Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn who carried out bombings in the late 1960’s-70’s .Obama has no legacy for his so called Library why he is not in jail is beyound me . Illegally voted in with a forged birth certificate .

  2. Vic Bailey

    August 29, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    Seems like America has become a country of TRAITORS and SCUM Thugs and Punks. No wonder we are in such a mess, NOBODY believes in OUR CONSTITUTION anymore, this must STOP if these BASTARDS hate our Constitutional Laws then they need to GET OUT! Semper Fi.

  3. Pingback: Illinois’ GOP Governor Just Signed A Bill Helping Criminal Immigrants – The Conservative Truth

  4. Rob Lester

    August 29, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    BULL****…
    This guy IS a COWARD…
    He is COWERING behind what the dems in the state want.
    They are now going to decide just how much illegal activity is enough to warrant true police activity.
    As memory serves, and illegal is called an illegal for BREAKING the Law of this land.
    I see NOTHING wrong with removing people who violate the Law.

  5. Rosemary Melichar

    August 29, 2017 at 12:55 pm

    Mr.Rauner, you’re idiot! USAF Retired!

  6. William

    August 29, 2017 at 2:07 pm

    I don’t get what is legal about illegal? If it’s illegal, it means someone has broken a law. If this governor has approved this, hasn’t he broken a law? Like harboring or something? Seems like the Feds could take this to the Supreme Court to see if these states are ACTUALLY breaking a law.

  7. Denise Lafferty

    August 29, 2017 at 8:56 pm

    These politicians are more concerned with getting as many voters as possible to like them. It’s all about keeping a job. If he appears to lean too far right then the left will vote for his opponent……and politicians who want to stay in office will cave in order to remain in politics.

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