The Mayor of Lansing, Michigan declared his city as a “sanctuary city” for illegal immigrants and vowed to fight to continue receiving federal funding from the government. But the city council in Lansing had something else to say. They voted on Wednesday to rescind the previous decision after there were significant concerns raised by local business leaders and citizens. The decision comes as reports have surfaced that “Red States” are going to go after cities and municipalities that declare “sanctuary” status.
Council members voted 5-2 to reverse last week’s 6-0 vote to give the city “sanctuary” status. This status refers to jurisdictions that do not cooperate with U.S. immigration officials. Immigration advocates called the council members “spineless” and promised, “you’re all losing your seats.” After the previous unanimous vote, the council received a letter from the Lansing Regional Chamber and Michigan Chamber of Commerce urging them to remove the “sanctuary city” status from the resolution. “Lansing is a diverse community, rich with history and culture. It’s what makes our city a welcoming destination to live, work and thrive,” the letter said. “Recent actions of City Council, whether intended or not, have placed an unnecessary target on the City of Lansing while jeopardizing millions of dollars in federal funding that impacts the city budget.”
Councilwoman Judi Brown Clarke responded to their decision saying, “The term ‘sanctuary’ in the resolution has become very problematic and distracting — so distracting in my opinion that’s it’s taken away from the intent of our resolution, which is to protect individuals. It’s basically a ‘don’t ask’ policy, which was outlined by the mayor’s executive order and what we had in our policy complements that.”
Richard Studley, Michigan Chamber President, and CEO said that his group’s members want city officials, “To stop wasting time on costly political statements and focus on real economic issues. I have no problem with the earlier resolution that affirmed the city’s status as a welcoming city. The challenge is with the language declaring the city a ‘sanctuary city’ — adopted hastily with little debate. I think that it is easily misinterpreted or misunderstood.”
This issue in Lansing has created a debate in the Republican-controlled Michigan Legislature. It is now considering banning local governments from enacting or enforcing any rules that hinder communication and cooperation with federal immigration officials.
This debate is long from being over. What are your thoughts about Lansing?
Credit: Fox News