Democrats in Annapolis are formulating legislation and other initiatives in anticipation of changes in federal policy which they plan to introduce in the coming days. Included in the legislation is a bill that would make Maryland a sanctuary state for illegal immigrants.
Immigration advocates are working with Maryland lawmakers to draft the Maryland Trust Act. A bill shaped after a California law that restricts the state’s assistance to deportation authorities.
At present, warrant units will notify the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement Office right away when there is a person in custody that has a wanted detainer. Once the person in custody is in completion of the local charges, including release on bail, the federal agency is notified to pick up the person if the detention center or prison has received a copy of the judicial warrant. The warrant gives the state authority to hold a person for 48 hours.
The new legislation would prohibit any county employee from voluntarily helping federal employees enforce federal immigration law. It also would forbid discrimination and bar inquests into someone’s citizenship.
Opponents say sanctuary cities violate federal law. These municipalities are in effect creating their own immigration policies. Only the U.S. Congress, the legislative branch of the federal government develops and passes legislation, which the President signs into law and federal agencies implement.
Challengers refer to studies stressing that illegal immigrants cost the U.S. government and municipalities more than the immigrant worker’s pay in taxes. Conferring to this assessment, illegal immigration degrades public education, health care, and other services for citizens, with the heaviest burden falling on the underprivileged.
Failure to uphold federal immigration laws encourages more illegal activity, discourages others from obeying laws and demeans all immigrants who are residents in the U.S. legally. There isn’t anything right about breaking the law.
Contact your district legislature to protest this new legislation and respectfully request that the State of Maryland maintain federal law.
Email the MD Attorney General's Office: firstname.lastname@example.org or call (410) 576-6300.
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