Feb 26 2020

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Senator Thom Tillis (R-NC) issued the following statement after a federal appeals court in New York ruled that the Trump administration can withhold federal grants from sanctuary jurisdictions who refuse to cooperate with U.S. immigration enforcement:

“Partisan Democratic politicians are jeopardizing the safety of North Carolinians by sheltering dangerous and violent illegal immigrants instead of doing the right thing and transferring them to federal law enforcement. The Trump administration would not have to take executive action to hold sanctuary jurisdictions accountable if Democrats simply did their jobs to keep their constituents safe. While my bills would provide a different method for combatting sanctuary policies, this ruling makes clear Congress needs to pass the bills I introduced to end dangerous sanctuary policies once and for all and allow victims to sue sanctuary jurisdictions.”


Last year, Senator Tillis introduced the Immigration Detainer Enforcement Act, legislation that would clarify the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) detainer authority, clearly establish the authority of states and localities to maintain custody in cases in which a detainer has been issued, and incentivize cooperation between law enforcement agencies and DHS through the reimbursement of certain detention, technology, and litigation-related costs.

The introduction was a follow-up to the Justice for Victims of Sanctuary Cities Act, legislation introduced by Senator Tillis and highlighted by President Trump at the State of the Union that would hold sanctuary jurisdictions like Mecklenburg County accountable for failing to comply with lawful detainer and release notification requests made by federal authorities. Tillis’ legislation creates a private right of civil action for the victims of sanctuary jurisdictions, allowing them to bring an action for compensatory damages against the sanctuary jurisdiction as a result of a violent crime committed by an illegal immigrant.