RICHMOND, Jan. 17 -- Virginia Attorney General Robert F. McDonnell (R) called Wednesday for legislation and an executive order to allow state and local police to enforce federal immigration laws in an effort to crack down on violent criminals who are in the country illegally.
Flanked by lawmakers from Manassas, Prince William County and Herndon -- three Northern Virginia communities with large Latino populations and plenty of public pressure to get tougher on undocumented residents -- McDonnell said law enforcement must be given more tools to stop such criminals.
`McDonnell says state and local officers currently lack the legal ability to detain people on immigration charges. He also wants this authority in order to go after illegal immigrants who have committed crimes, been deported, and then returned. He says that 80,000 such people are in the United States currently.
But the Governor, a Democrat, does not want the police to gain that power. He would apparently rather let violent criminals prey on the people of his state.
Gov. Timothy M. Kaine (D), however, reiterated that he does not intend to sign an executive order of the sort McDonnell endorsed. He said immigration enforcement is a federal duty, not a state one.
"What we want to do is demand of our federal delegation and legislators that they provide appropriate funding for anti-immigration activity, and not take the pressure off by having the Virginia taxpayers pay the bill," Kaine said.
Kaine is wrong on a few counts. First of all, Virginia taxpayers are going to pay the bill either way. It is just a question of which government agency at what level takes their money and uses it for that purpose. Second, local enforcement is the most cost effective and most practical way to go. Local police are in every town. Federal immigration agents are rare compared to local police. Also, local police run into illegals in the course of their normal work investigating crimes and doing patrols. Why waste those many fortuitous encounters and all the knowledge they gain when questioning people?
Kaine is most fundamentally wrong when he finds excuses to prevent police from catching violent criminals. The primary purpose of government is to protect our rights. He would rather pander to ethnic interests than to protect the rights and safety of citizens. He demonstrates yet another reason why immigration of non-majority ethnic groups and races causes problems for the white majority.
|Share |||By Randall Parker at 2007 January 28 05:22 PM Immigration Law Enforcement|