House Passes Bipartisan Gosar Amendment Blocking Funds for Sanctuary Cities

Jul 8, 2016 Issues: Immigration and Border Security

For Immediate Release
Date: July 7, 2016

 

Contact: Steven D. Smith
Steven.Smith@mail.house.gov

WASHINGTON, D.C. –U.S. Congressman Paul A. Gosar, D.D.S. (AZ-04) released the following statement after successfully passing an amendment blocking funds for sanctuary city policies on the House floor by a vote of 236-182 and attaching it to H.R. 5485, the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2017:

“The concept of ‘sanctuary city’ policies is in direct opposition to the Rule of Law and our Constitution. Article 1, Section 8, Clause 4, gives Congress clear jurisdiction on immigration matters. A nation of laws must enforce established law, not seek ways to skirt around it. Sanctuary cities defy federal immigration statutes by harboring untold numbers of illegal immigrants and providing safe havens for criminals, many of whom are violent offenders.

“Instead of enforcing the law and bringing these rogue municipalities into compliance, the Obama Administration has aided and abetted their circumvention of federal statute. This lawlessness is not only unconstitutional, it has proven to be deadly and put the security of our communities at risk. When the federal government fails to enforce the law, Congress must act to prevent sanctuary city policies that are recklessly endangering their citizens and willfully violating federal law.”

Background:

The full text of the Gosar amendment blocking funds for sanctuary city policies can be found HERE.

The amendment was cosponsored by Lou Barletta (R-PA), Diane Black (R-TN), Dave Brat (R-VA), Jim Bridenstine (R-OK), Mo Brooks (R-AL), Jeff Duncan (R-SC), Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Tim Huelskamp (R-KS) and Walter Jones (R-NC).

The Federation for American Immigration Reform supported this amendment stating, “Gosar Amendment #31 addresses a critical public safety problem and sends a clear message to sanctuary city jurisdictions that their dangerous policies are unacceptable.”

Additionally, NumbersUSA key voted in support of this amendment and stated, “The Gosar Amendment is a targeted approach to sanctuary policies.”

The shocking case of Kate Steinle in San Francisco in 2015, revealed the danger sanctuary cities pose to our Republic. Last Friday, July 1, was the one-year anniversary of Steinle’s tragic murder. This young woman was shot while walking on a pier in San Francisco with her father by Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, an illegal immigrant who had been deported five times. Local authorities had previously been asked to detain Sanchez until he could be turned over to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials. The city declined and held Sanchez in jail for less than a month on a 20-year-old drug charge before releasing him on April 15, 2015, less than two months before he killed Steinle.

The Steinle killing called attention to the dangers sanctuary city policies pose to the safety and security of the American people. The House has voted and passed language that prohibits federal funds from going to sanctuary cities five different times in recent years. In March, Rep. Gosar led 42 members of the House in submitting an Appropriations request seeking to withhold federal funding for sanctuary cities.

The Gosar amendment prohibits funds within this Act from being used in contravention of federal immigration law for Sanctuary City policies. Specifically, section 642(a) of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 that prohibits sanctuary policies that prevent or obstruct government and law enforcement officials from sharing information regarding a person’s immigration status with the Immigration and Naturalization Service.

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