In the Weekly Republican Address, Senator Pat Toomey spoke about a bill concerning sanctuaries cities that the U.S. Senate is scheduled to vote on next week.
The Senator pointed to an incident in California last summer to emphasize why the legislation was necessary.
“Jim Steinle was walking arm-in-arm with his daughter Kate on a San Francisco pier. Suddenly a gunman opened fire, hitting Kate. She fell in her father’s arms, pleading, ‘help me, Dad,’ as she bled to death,” Toomey stated. “That shooter should never have been on the pier that day. He was an illegal immigrant, who had been previously convicted of seven felonies and deported five times.”
“During an eight-month period last year, sanctuary cities across the country released thousands of illegal immigrants,” Toomey continued. “Eighteen hundred of them were later arrested for criminal acts. These sanctuary policies are dangerous and they undermine enforcement of our immigration laws.”
Toomey asserted that he was not suggesting that all immigrants are criminals, and that he fully “supports immigration reforms that include opportunities for immigrants to come to America legally.”
“Kate Steinle’s murder shed light on the serious public safety risks that happen when sanctuary cities undermine law enforcement. In response, the House of Representatives passed legislation this summer with bipartisan support that would help rein in these policies. Now, it’s the Senate’s turn,” Toomey explained.
With this, he introduced the Stop Sanctuary Policies Act.
“Under this commonsense legislation, sanctuary cities would lose federal funds if they maintain these dangerous policies. We have to take this step in order to get these cities to do the right thing and stop undermining our immigration laws,” Toomey stated. “Our legislation also includes ‘Kate’s Law’, which provides a five-year mandatory minimum sentence for any illegal immigrant who re-enters the U.S after having been convicted of an aggravated felony, or having been twice convicted of illegally re-entering the U.S.”
Toomey concluded with a call for bipartisan support and stated that the Senate will vote on this legislation on Tuesday.