Thursday, November 16, 2023
As ABC and numerous other news outlets are reporting, the Texas Senate passed SB 4 on Tuesday, by a vote of 83-61, and the bill now awaits Governor's signature.
This extreme immigration enforcement bill attempts to authorize local law enforcement to arrest migrants crossing the border into Texas. It also allows state court judges to order migrants returned to their country. And, it makes failure to return after such an order a felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
Lisa Graybill, vice president of law and policy at the National Immigration Law Center, had this to say about SB 4:
“SB 4 is the latest attempt by Texas legislators to take federal immigration law into their own hands for personal political gain through hatemongering and intimidation. Both the politics and the law behind this bill are dead wrong. Texas law enforcement officers should focus on protecting the health, welfare, and safety of all community members instead of trying to become the immigration police. This bill will have real human consequences that all Texas residents will feel. It is an extreme bill that will endanger communities and lead to racial profiling of both immigrants and U.S.-born residents.
“Federal courts, including the Supreme Court, have consistently held that the federal government has the sole authority to regulate immigration policy. The Texas Legislature is wrong to have passed it, and Governor Abbott will be wrong if he signs it. We call on Texas to abandon this cruel, illegal scheme and recognize that immigrants make Texas and our nation stronger.”