It seems like the family of Kate Steinle will have to wait longer for congressional action regarding sanctuary cities. Congress decided to take a bill aimed at tackling these enclaves was taken off the docket for the foreseeable future. According to Politico, the bill was put in limbo in the Senate Judiciary Committee when the Senate adjourned for the August recess early. Steinle was killed by an illegal immigrant, Francisco Sanchez, while walking on a pier with her father in San Francisco. Sanchez shot Steinle by accident, claiming to be under the influence of pills. It gained national attention due to Sanchez admitting that he had been deported five times, and came back to San Francisco because it was a sanctuary city. He knew there would be no concerted effort to find him and deport him again:
Senate Republicans are punting on a controversial bill targeting “sanctuary cities” — a signal that GOP lawmakers are struggling to coalesce around a legislative response to the alleged shooting death of a San Francisco woman by an undocumented immigrant earlier this year.
“The members are still working on improving the language, so it will be held over,” Beth Levine, a spokeswoman for Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), said Tuesday.
GOP lawmakers crafted several bills meant to punish so-called “sanctuary cities” that decline to cooperate with federal immigration officials trying to track down undocumented immigrants such as Lopez Sanchez. But in the Senate, an intraparty rift had opened up over the issue of mandatory minimums, with Republicans on the committee colliding over a proposal that would enact a mandatory minimum prison sentence of five years for immigrants who try to re-enter the country illegally after being deported.
The article noted that rift is so deep on the committee that if the GOP loses one vote, the bill will fail to move forward. One of the goals of sanctuary cities was to allow illegal aliens to come forward and report crimes without fear of arrest and deportation. Now, even some media outlets, like USA Today, have called such a policy as one that lacks common sense.
Last Note: Recently, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson called San Francisco’s sanctuary city ordinance “not acceptable,” according to Mediate. “It is counterproductive to public safety to have this level of resistance to working with our immigration enforcement personnel … We’re all interested in getting criminals off the street,” he said