Attorney General Jeff Sessions has issued a warning to the State of Maryland. If they pass legislation cited as The Maryland Law Enforcement and Trust Act, it will “make the state of Maryland more at risk for violence and crime.” This act passed the House of Delegates last week and is now awaiting Senate action. Sessions said, “Well, you know, Maryland is talking about a state law, to make the state a sanctuary state. The governor is opposed to that, I’m glad to hear.” He continued, “That would be such a mistake. I would plead with the people of Maryland to understand that this makes the state of Maryland more at risk for violence and crime, that it’s not good policy.” The Republican Governor of Maryland, Larry Hogan, has promised to veto the law.
The proposed legislation has been co-sponsored by Del. Kathleen M. Dumais. She defended it vigorously during floor debates. She maintains that the measure does not prevent corrections officers or law enforcement from cooperating with federal agents when undocumented immigrants have committed serious crimes. She said, “Before criticizing proposed legislation, I suggest that Attorney General Sessions take time to actually read the bill. The Trust Act certainly does not make Maryland more at risk for crime and violence. Anyone who commits a crime or violence in Maryland should be and is prosecuted to the full extent of the law, regardless of immigration status.”
The law would bar the use of state resources to assist the enforcement of the federal immigration law, and it would also prohibit Maryland jurisdictions from holding undocumented prisoners for 48 hours past their release date. Finally, The Trust Act would bar the establishment of a state registry for Muslims.
This is a serious debate among the people of Maryland since the alleged rape of a 14-year-old Rockville High School student by two undocumented immigrants also enrolled in the high school. Attorney General Sessions appeared at a daily White House briefing to announce that the Justice Department will begin using federal law to prevent “sanctuary cities” from receiving federal grants for state and local law enforcement.
Where do you stand on this issue? Would you vote in favor or against The Maryland Law Enforcement and Trust Act?