About half of all Americans live in a jurisdiction under sanctuary policies.
How significant are sanctuary policies in the United States? According to the Federation for American Immigration Reform (FAIR) nearly half of all Americans live in a jurisdiction that refuses to cooperate with federal immigration enforcement.
It is almost understandable why people regard the issue as virtually a civil war. It truly divides the country!
The Washington Times reports, “Half of all Americans now live in ‘sanctuaries’ protecting immigrants.”
About half of all Americans now live under sanctuary policies that shield illegal immigrants from law enforcement, according to the latest tally of jurisdictions that the Federation for American Immigration Reform is releasing Thursday.
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FAIR calculates there were 564 states and municipalities that refuse some level of cooperation with federal immigration authorities as of April 1, up more than 200 since President Trump took office and up more than 500 compared with a decade ago. There were just 40 sanctuaries when President Obama took office.
Entire states such as California, Illinois and New York are now sanctuaries, as well as major cities and counties such as Fairfax, Montgomery and Prince George’s counties and the District of Columbia in the capital region, according to the list.
Combined, the sanctuaries on FAIR’s list cover 49 percent of the country’s population, The Washington Times calculated.
“This is just an astounding and a dramatic surge of sanctuary jurisdictions,” said Bob Dane, executive director at FAIR. “They’ve doubled in just two years, and if you game that out, if the exponential growth continues, it’s not going to be long before it’s accurate to say the U.S. is a sanctuary country.”
While there is no official definition of sanctuaries, FAIR counted any jurisdiction that bans police or other officials from asking about immigration status, forbids communication with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, or refuses to hold likely deportees for pickup by ICE.
The organization scoured local government policies, looked at press reports and used ICE’s own set of reports last year listing jurisdictions that refused to honor “detainer” requests to hold illegal immigrants.
FAIR’s numbers are higher than other counts, such as the Ohio Jobs and Justice Political Action Committee, which has been tracking sanctuaries for years, or the ICE detainer list, which was started then quickly discontinued last year.
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