- - Tuesday, July 21, 2015

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

There’s bad immigration news, but it’s leavened by news that is a little better. The bad news is that the Center for Immigration Studies puts the number of illegal aliens crossing the border by the seventh year of the Obama administration at 2.5 million. The better news is that the number of illegals swarming to the United States has leveled off, owing to hundreds of thousands who have gone home. Arrivals and departures are now about even.

A study released Monday finds that the illegal population has quickened by about 790,000 over the past two years, as determined by U.S. Census data, owing to a slowly improving U.S. economy and the Obama policies that encourage the flood. The numbers of border-crossers from Mexico and other Latin American nations are now surpassed by the frequency of visitors from Asia, Africa and Europe, who arrive legally, overstay their visas, and become illegal.

It was an illegal from Mexico who rekindled debate over fixing the broken border when he shot and killed 32-year-old Kate Steinle on an evening stroll with her father after dinner along San Francisco’s Pier 14 on July 1. Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, charged with her murder, had been deported five times and was roaming free, enjoying sanctuary in San Francisco.

This particular, but not unique, outrage focuses attention on the 200 cities large and small that prohibit their police to cooperate with federal immigration authorities, calling themselves “sanctuary cities.” Killers like Francisco Lopez-Sanchez are naturally drawn to the sanctuaries, which put their ordinances and resolutions above federal law that governs everyone else. President Obama, who has encouraged the waves of illegal immigration that threaten the states on the border, is usually eager to talk about certain victims of crime. He has yet to comment on the murder of this young white woman in San Francisco, as if her life doesn’t matter.

Legislation, however, is germinating on Capitol Hill. One bill would enact Kate’s Law, named for Miss Steinle and backed by Sen. Charles Grassley of Iowa, the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee. It would mandate stiff prison sentences for illegals who are arrested in the United States after deportation. The Stop Catch and Release Act of 2015, sponsored by Rep. Matt Salmon, Arizona Republican, would prohibit the Department of Homeland Security from releasing illegals who are arrested for criminal offenses, making them subject to deportation.

The Davis-Oliver Act, sponsored by Sen. Jeff Sessions of Alabama and Rep. Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, both Republicans, and named for two California sheriffs killed by illegals, would punish sanctuary cities by withholding federal funds from those that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration orders to deport illegals.

The arrival of foreigners on our shores in search of a better life is the story of America. Americans take just pride in their origins as immigrants. But this is a nation of laws as well as a nation of immigrants, and a Rasmussen Poll finds that by a margin of 62 to 26 percent voters want the Justice Department to deal with rogue cities that provide sanctuary for illegal aliens. There’s nothing natural nor admirable about the lawlessness that is shattering the American dream for legal immigrants. Enough is more than enough.

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