Manteca Police do not go looking for illegal immigrants.
And when they come across them at driving under the influence/driver’s license checkpoints, they are typically unlicensed drivers. They do not call Immigration and Customs Enforcement. They do not impound the vehicle. They allow the illegal immigrant that is an unlicensed driver to call someone to retrieve the vehicle they are driving. They get cited, not arrested.
What Manteca Police do is pretty typical. Should they arrest someone for suspicion of a violent felony in all due time the issue of legal citizenship will come up.
There is a big difference between an illegal immigrant driving unlicensed and an illegal immigrant arrested on suspicion of murder.
There are people in Sacramento tone death to such real life subtleties that are pragmatic for a lot of reasons including manpower and efficiency that want to make California a sanctuary state. They even want to go as far as passing legislation that provides state tax dollars to provide legal representation for an illegal immigrant in California facing deportation by the federal government.
At the same time there are more than a few conservatives that view the 9th District Court of Appeals as an illegal immigrant’s best friend.
While all of the world seemed to have been waiting on the 9th District’s ruling on President Trump’s travel ban order, the appeals court this week issued another ruling that people should calm down and take note of.
The 9th District upheld the deportation of Rufino Peralta-Sanchez. He was arrested in 2002 while illegally crossing into the United States from Mexico. He was returned to Mexico the next day without a hearing.
This irked immigration rights activists who sued. They insisted Peralta-Sanchez had the right to a hearing.
The court ruled otherwise. They referenced the 1996 federal law that allows custom and borders agents to opt for a procedure known as “expedited removal” to rapidly deport illegal immigrants that are arrested within 100 miles of the border and lack valid entry documents with the addition proviso they have been in the country for less than 14 days.
The law explicitly states such illegal immigrants are not entitled to a hearing, are not required to go before a judge and have no right to appeal.
The courts have been clear immigration is a federal issue. And as long as there are legally adopted laws that don’t raise constitutional issues the federal government calls the shots.
What a lot of people seem to be forgetting is Trump has used executive power conferred by Congress decades ago and used by his predecessors from Ronald Reagan to Barack Obama to issue similar orders. The question is not whether Trump has the constitutional right as president to issue travel bans but whether this particular executive order is within the framework of federal law.
Unfortunately much of the debate is being driven on both sides in such a manner to inflame passions and not to seek a resolution.
It is logical that the federal government and not the City of San Francisco — or the City of Manteca for that matter — is in control of this nation’s borders and immigration law.
For practical purposes, what Manteca is doing is the norm. Illegals once they are established in this country aren’t subject to dragnets instigated by local or state law enforcement agencies. They can fly under the federal radar as long as they don’t being attention to themselves by committing a felony crime or get caught up in ICE sweeps of employers. And most of the times in ICE sweeps they aren’t incarcerated while awaiting a court hearing unless they have warrants for serious felonies. The reason is obvious. There are too many illegal immigrants.
Those here illegally, who are supporting themselves (it’s tough to get welfare when you’re an illegal), and are not committing felonies or a chain of serious misdemeanors such as being arrested again and again for theft should be provided an option that allows them a path to either becoming a citizen or establishing legal presence via a work visa. If they opt not to pursue one or the other after a set time they need to be deported.
As for the high handed wailing of companies such as those based in the Silicon Valley, let’s quit the charade. Their beef is with quotas that work against their ability to make money by hiring foreign citizens trained as engineers and programmers and allowing them free movement and not with travel bans per se. .
They are clearly concerned with travel bans involving those accessing this country by meeting legal standards set by the federal government. This is not splitting hairs. Once again we are not having a debate about illegal immigration. It is about perceived terrorism threats and legal travel of non-citizens with visas.
It would be nice if people on both sides of the fence sat down and hammered out a holistic immigration policy.
We are not lapsing into a police state when it comes to illegals regardless of political posturing in Sacramento.
At the same time the courts aren’t throwing out the constitution while trying to implement globalism.
Everyone needs to take a deep breath.
This column is the opinion of executive editor, Dennis Wyatt, and does not necessarily represent the opinion of The Bulletin or Morris Newspaper Corp. of CA. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org or 209.249.3519.