Democrat lawmakers claim the new bill is designed to protect illegal aliens from any crackdown by President Donald Trump.
SB54, authored by Senate pro Tem Kevin De Léon (D-Los Angeles) and Sen. Richard Pan (D-Sacramento), is scheduled to be heard in the State Senate’s Public Safety Committee this morning.
According to Senator De Léon’s website, SB54 (along with two other bills designed to provide state funds for legal defense for anyone ordered deported) is to be known as “Protecting California’s People and Prosperity Against Immigration Enforcement Overreach.” De Leon has ordered these measures “to prevent the use of state and local resources, including personnel, for immigration enforcement; and the creation of a federal registry” fast-tracked, meaning the normal schedule of hearings that can take weeks will be compressed into less than a week.
It is likely, however, that the new legislation is not even necessary, since Gov. Jerry Brown signed SB4 — the “Trust Act” — to make California a sanctuary state’ back in October 2013. This bill will do exactly what that bill claimed to do — namely, prevent law enforcement officials from cooperating with federal immigration authorities.
Regardless of whether this bill is even necessary, in a state that has refused to cooperate with federal immigration authorities for years, remains to be seen.
Major cities like Los Angeles and San Francisco have had “sanctuary” policies for decades, which became a focal point of Trump’s campaign when he highlighted the victims of illegal alien criminals.
One thing is certain, however. Given that President Trump often cited the tragic case of Kate Steinle — the 32-year old woman struck by a bullet fired by a five-time deported illegal alien and seven-time convicted felon — to make it clear he intended to penalize any city that offered itself a “sanctuary city” for illegal alien criminals, a federal showdown is looming.
The political grandstanding will continue in California as long as President Trump pursues existing immigration law.