The chairman of the Prince William County Board of Supervisors is proposing an Arizona-style illegal immigration law for the entire Commonwealth of Virginia.
The tough law on illegal immigration the county adopted a couple of years ago isn’t sufficient, according to a statement released by Corey Stewart for Chairman.
“We saw a 37 percent drop in violent crime in the first two years of enforcement and overall crime is at a 15-year low,” he said. “But we have anecdotally known, since day one, that the criminal aliens that fled were just going to neighboring jurisdictions.”
So Stewart has started a petition online and a Facebook page for The Virginia Rule of Law Campaign. He has promised a draft of the law soon
It would give police more power to identify and deport illegal immigrants, impose harsh penalties for illegal immigrants, and crack down on day labor and human smuggling. Jails would release illegal immigrants to Immigrations and Customs Enforcement upon completion of their sentences. Police would be allowed to make arrests without warrants if they believed those arrests could lead to deportations. And individual cities and counties would be barred from interfering.
Prince William County’s controversial law doesn’t make it a crime to be an illegal immigrant in the county, but it allows police to check immigration status of people who’ve been arrested, which Stewart credits for the drop in violent crime and fewer illegal immigrants in the county.
Those who campaigned for the law, which took effect in July 2008, argued that the county had to take care of itself if the commonwealth and country weren’t going to address illegal immigration. Stewart’s latest campaign takes the same position.
“As long as the federal government shows no interest in securing the border and no interest in internal enforcement to promote self-deportation, then states and localities will have to pick up the slack,” he said.
And he intends to use the 2011 election to pressure the General Assembly into passing his Virginia Rule of Law next session.
Corey’s Updated Website:
The Virginia Rule of Law Act
Enhance Police Powers to Capture, Detain, and help Deport Criminal Aliens
- Direct Virginia law enforcement officials to ascertain, in any lawful contact, the legal presence of an individual, when practicable.
- Direct Virginia jails to release criminal aliens to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) after serving their sentence.
- Allow law enforcement officials to arrest illegals without warrant if they have reasonable suspicion that the arrest would make them removable from the United States.
Virginia Criminal Penalties for Illegal Aliens
- Make it a violation of Virginia law to fail to complete alien registration documents.
- Impose harsh penalties for terrorists and illegals caught with illegal drugs and deadly weapons.
Outlaw Sanctuary Policies
- Prohibit cities and counties from preventing law enforcement officials from inquiring about legal presence or preventing them from sharing information with ICE.
Outlaw Illegal Day Laboring and Public Roadside Solicitation
- Allow law enforcement officials to break up day laboring operations.
- Prohibit solicitation along all public roads, crippling illegal day labor sites.
Crackdown on Human Smuggling Prohibit smuggling and human trafficking, especially for sexual slavery.
The election is in 2011. Corey is attempting to ride the coattails of the Arizona anti-immigration law SB1070 (download the law) and capture some of the national attention that Arizona is getting over immigration. It was announced late this afternoon that the Administration will sue the State of Arizona over its law that is set to go into effect. July 28, 2010. I suppose Corey Stewart is jealous of the impending lawsuit that will cost an already cash-strapped Arizona millions it can’t afford to spend. Does Virginia need to get sued also?
Corey needs to stop grand-standing and stop the continual embarrassment to Prince William County. There needs to be no Virginia Rule of Law Act. There are some extremely serious violations embedded in that proposal that are Constitutional violations that even a novice can spot. No Rule of Law there. If Stewart wants to be Mr. Rule of Law he needs to obey the law and stop trying to find ways to skirt around it just to get his name in the news.
From the PWC Police Crime Report: