Illegal immigration seems to be an issue that has fallen by the wayside in Washington. I wanted to update you on my thoughts on this important issue and tell you what I continue to work for in Congress.
In the past several months, there have been several instances where Sheriffs in the Eighth Congressional District have apprehended illegal aliens, yet they were directed to release the illegal aliens at the behest of the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency. With anywhere between 12 and 20 million illegal aliens in the United States, the federal government's reluctance to prosecute illegal aliens already in custody is appalling. We must do all we can to enforce the immigration laws already on the books, as well as provide state and local governments the tools they need to assist the federal government with capturing illegal aliens and to assume the compliance of employers with the law.
In an effort to rectify this situation, I want to bring your attention to a bill I have long supported in Congress known as the Clear Law Enforcement for Criminal Alien Removal (CLEAR) Act. The CLEAR Act would grant the authority for state and local law enforcement agencies to enforce immigration law, create additional detention facilities to increase the capacity to detain illegal aliens, and create a database of known immigration law violators to better assist law enforcement officers with the apprehension of illegal aliens. The legislation would also deny federal funds to municipalities that act as safe havens for illegal aliens by refusing to check the immigration status of individuals in custody. Unfortunately, this legislation will not see the light of day in the United States Congress because Speaker Pelosi is unwilling to address immigration enforcement legislation.
Please know that I will continue to support legislation aimed at increasing the enforcement of our immigration laws and the removal of illegal aliens already within our borders.
Friday, March 05, 2010
Emerson seeks tougher immigration laws
Eighth District Rep. Jo Ann Emerson's latest newsletter features a call for stronger immigration law: