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Congress Must Protect Americans Against Alien Criminals

There can be no doubt that illegal aliens, often protected by local “sanctuary” policies, are a criminal threat to American citizens.  This will continue unless Congress takes action to deal with the matter.
How great is the problem?  The high proportion of illegal aliens in the prison population certainly suggests that they are a significant contributor to the crime rate, and many studies confirm that fact.  Professor Barry Latzer, of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice, found that Texas homicides were committed by illegal aliens more often than by citizens and other legal residents. John Lott’s investigation of Arizona prisons found that “undocumented immigrants are at least 142% more likely to be convicted of a crime than other Arizonans.  They also commit more serious crimes . . . .”  Steven Camarota of the Center for Immigration Studies reviewed Federal Crime statistics from 2011 to 2016, which revealed that various crimes (including kidnapping, larceny, and auto theft) were more likely to be committed by illegal aliens.  Overall, they were 150% more likely to commit a Federal crime.  Data from the Federal government’s State Criminal Alien Assistance Program shows the same pattern, with illegal aliens in some states being imprisoned at a rate several times as high as legal residents. Other studies have also documented an unusually high percentage of crime, especially murder, committed by illegal aliens.
While there have been studies with a contrary finding, the flawed data used to reach that conclusion leave little grounds for credibility.
What can be done to reduce the population of criminal aliens?  Since “sanctuary cities” provide protection by refusing to turn these criminals over to ICE for deportation, eliminating this protection is the first step. 
Rep. Tom McClintock and Sen. Pat Toomey have introduced HR 3000 and S. 1644 (the Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act) to remedy the problem.  Although the federal system of our Constitution prohibits the Federal government from requiring states to assist in the enforcement of Federal laws,  Congress may make such assistance a condition for receiving Federal aid.
The McClintock and Toomey bills put conditions on “Economic Development”, “Public Works and Development”, “Protection of Individuals Against Crime”, and “Community Development” grants.  Such grants may not be awarded to a “sanctuary jurisdiction”, which is defined as one which will not exchange information with Federal officials regarding immigration status and/or will not honor Federal detainers under the immigration laws.  (There is an exception to protect anyone who “comes forward as a victim or a witness to a criminal offense.”)    
Passage of the Stop Dangerous Sanctuary Cities Act would force sanctuary jurisdictions to choose between harboring criminals and receiving Federal aid on which they have become dependent.  It would be a major step toward providing for the increased deportation of criminal aliens.
Americans will not be truly safe from these criminals until border security is achieved, but dealing with sanctuary jurisdictions is something that can be accomplished much more quickly.

The Conservative Caucus, a project of Americans for Constitutional Liberty, is a public policy organization, contributions to which are not tax deductible. The IRS has determined ACL to be a 501(c)(4) organization, exempt from Federal income tax. Contributions to ACL are not subject to FEC regulation or disclosure requirements, and corporate donations are permitted.

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