Washington D.C. – Congressman Darin LaHood (IL-18) and Congressman Tom McClintock (CA-4) introduced legislation to protect communities from violent criminals who are in the United States illegally.

Sanctuary city polices forbid local law enforcement from cooperating with federal immigration authorities, even when they wish to do so. The Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act will put an end to this practice which endangers the public.

“States that enforce lenient illegal immigration policies and restrict law enforcement from complying with Department of Homeland Security detainers need to have real consequences for disregarding federal law” stated Rep. LaHood. “Instead of punishing law enforcement officials in these communities, bureaucrats that refuse to comply with federal immigration laws should be held accountable for failing to cooperate. I’m proud to join Senator Toomey and Rep. McClintock in this effort, which will ensure our law enforcement officials are legally protected when complying with DHS and hold politicians implementing these sanctuary policies accountable.”

“The sanctuary city policies in California and in other states where sanctuary city policies have proliferated have placed the public and law enforcement at great risk,” stated Rep. McClintock. “Communication between local law enforcement and federal officials is not only good government, it is common sense.  We all know the extreme dangers to society posed by cities, counties and states declaring themselves sanctuary jurisdictions and refusing to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement officials.  It is unacceptable for these jurisdictions to refuse to cooperate with, and in some cases outright obstruct, the federal agents tasked with removing illegal aliens who have been arrested for a crime.”

Congressman LaHood and McClintock introduced the bill with 21 co-authors.

Companion legislation was introduced in the Senate by Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA).

The Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act would withhold certain non-law enforcement federal grant funds from "sanctuary cities" – jurisdictions that forbid their local law enforcement officers from cooperating with federal immigration officials, even when they wish to do so.

The legislation also addresses court decisions that may leave local police and municipalities liable when they assist the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) but the DHS has made an error. The measure preserves an individual's right to sue if a law enforcement officer commits any violation of the individual's civil or constitutional rights. However, this measure ensures that if the federal government committed the error or violated a right, the individual sues the federal government, not a local official acting in good faith and in compliance with a request from the DHS. The legislation also provides a safe harbor for jurisdictions that do not cooperate with federal immigration officials with regard to persons in the country illegally who come forward as victims or witnesses to a crime.

The legislation is supported by:

  • Federal Law Enforcement Officers Association
  • International Union of Police Associations, AFL-CIO
  • ?National Association of Police Organizations