Ruppersberger Supports Priority Enforcement, Opposes Penalties on Sanctuary Communities in Immigration Votes
(Washington, DC) – Congressman C.A. Dutch Ruppersberger issued the following statement following yesterday’s votes on key immigration-related legislation:
“My votes yesterday reflect my goal of prioritizing immigration enforcement to the few bad apples that endanger the otherwise law-abiding immigrant community. I voted against legislation that targets sanctuary cities – including those in my district – who rightly refuse to take on the expense and public safety consequences of turning their police into enforcers of civil immigration law. The “No Sanctuary for Criminals Act” would unfairly withhold critical federal funds needed to fight crime and drugs and would only erode the trust we need between local police and the citizens they serve. It’s irresponsible and dangerous.
Consistent with this vote, I also supported legislation to increase sentences for illegal immigrants with previous felony convictions who re-enter the United States after being deported. Of the 11 million-plus illegal immigrants in our country, these are the ones our immigration agents should be targeting – in fact, recidivist criminals need to be held accountable for their actions regardless of their citizenship status.
This legislation in no way encourages new deportations – in fact, also yesterday, I spoke out and voted against the Administration’s plan to cancel enlistment contracts for foreign-born military recruits without legal status, setting the stage for the deportation of 1,000 immigrants serving our Armed Forces. My record in support of common sense, comprehensive immigration reform including a pathway to citizenship speaks for itself. It’s time to get serious about fixing our immigration system once and for all. We are a country built by immigrants seeking peace, freedom and opportunity and I believe our policies should reflect this heritage.”