On "Sanctuary Cities," Updated with Audio
I’ll be on the Ernie Brown show this afternoon at 2:05 on KRLD to talk about the accusation that Houston is a “sanctuary city.” It simply isn’t, but the guy filling in for Ernie, my good friend Chris Salcedo (pictured), seems to be under the impression that it is.
I blogged about it last night here.
Since I blogged about it, some have pointed out that Houston’s police department does have a standing order that officers are not to inquire about the immigration status of anyone. But, this is what the order actually says, as reported by the Texas Tribune:
Based on the premise that officers must rely on the cooperation of everyone in their jurisdiction — including illegal immigrants — to solve crimes and arrest suspects, the policy forbade officers from making inquiries “as to the citizenship status of any person” or detaining or arresting people solely on the belief that they are in the country illegally. The order, however, did not prevent them from contacting federal immigration officials about criminal aliens or assisting them with matters of “mutual concern.”
Essentially all that says is that officers don’t roll through neighborhoods looking for illegal immigrants, but if someone is arrested the police will work with Immigration and Customs Enforcement to make sure any immigration status issues are addressed.
A true “sanctuary city,” like San Francisco, works to let illegal immigrants know they are welcome there and the police have nothing to do with immigration issues.
Update with audio:
I think the appearance with Chris went well. Unfortunately (and as is usually the case with him), Chris isn’t willing to listen to the facts. Here’s the first segment:
As you can hear, Chris is hung up on a list put together by the Congressional Research Service that names Houston as a “sanctuary city.” I believe this is the list he’s talking about. It’s interesting that my friend who never trusts congress or the federal government to get anything right defers to them on this issue and dismisses the facts I laid out about how Houston police handle their interactions with immigrants.
It’s important to note that there is no legal definition for what constitutes a “sanctuary city.” Now, listen to the second segment, in which Chris continues to push the same bogus facts as if he and I hadn’t previously talked about it for nearly 10 minutes:
Your thoughts are welcome in the comments below.