California Dem Wants to State to be 'Wall of Justice' Against Deportations
California state Sen. Kevin de Leon envisions the Golden State becoming a “wall of justice” against what the Los Angeles Democrat is afraid will be the Trump administration’s “inhuman and over-reaching mass deportation policy.”
During his primary campaign, then-candidate Donald Trump talked about using a “massive (yet humane) deportation force” to round up as many as 11 million illegal aliens in the U.S. and ship them back to Mexico, or wherever they came from.
Now, the president-elect is only talking about deporting or jailing as many as 3 million aliens who illegally call the U.S. home.
“What we are going to do is get the people that are criminal and have criminal records, gang members, drug dealers, we have a lot of these people, probably 2 million, it could be even 3 million, we are getting them out of our country or we are going to incarcerate,” Trump told Lesley Stahl on CBS’ 60 Minutes.
But Sen. de Leon is still worried. And if he can’t change Trump’s mind from Sacramento, de Leon figures he can at least use California law to block or delay the coming White House agenda.
De Leon has introduced SB 54, the California Values Act. It would prevent the use of state and local public resources to aid the deportation efforts of federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents.
“We will not stand by and let the federal government use our state and local agencies to separate mothers from their children,” de Leon said in a statement.
However, the California Values Act would not prevent state or local police from complying with a judicial warrant to move violent criminals into federal custody for immigration enforcement purposes.
That’s OK with San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon. He said the requirement for a warrant protects the right to due process, which he described as “the bedrock of the U.S. criminal justice system.”
Gascon, a former San Francisco police chief and deputy police chief of Los Angeles, said SB 54 would also help local police fight crime.
“When victims of crime don't come forward for fear of immigration consequences, the impact on public safety reaches far beyond immigrant communities,” he said.
Cynthia Buiza, executive director of the California Immigration Policy Center, complained of “ugly slurs of xenophobia” and railed against “Trump and other forces who seek to demonize and persecute immigrants” as she voiced her support for de Leon’s legislation.
“Getting law enforcement out of painful deportations, protecting the integrity of public spaces, and rejecting any registry which target Muslims will send a potent message to the nation and the world,” Buiza advocated.
Robin Hvidston, executive director of the group We the People Rising, has heard enough.
She told the Los Angeles Times President-elect Trump is not threatening to send ICE agents into schools to round up children or into supermarkets to collar mothers. Nor is he “demonizing” immigrants.