Durbin Slams Trump Administration's Efforts To Turn Local Law Enforcement Into Immigration Police

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senate Democratic Whip Dick Durbin (D-IL), Ranking Democrat on the Senate Judiciary Immigration Subcommittee, today slammed the Trump Administration for its efforts to turn local law enforcement agencies into a deportation force.  During a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing on so-called sanctuary cities, Durbin spoke about the need for bipartisan comprehensive immigration reform legislation and called out President Donald Trump’s anti-immigrant agenda and his threat earlier this year that ICE would deport “millions” of immigrants.

“When we get back to a credible exchange for the safety of the United States, count me in.  At this point, this President has declared war on immigrants, and the fear in the community that I represent is the reason we are sitting here today,” Durbin said to Timothy Robbins, Acting Executive Associate Director for Enforcement and Removal Operations, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).

Video of Durbin’s remarks in Committee are available here.

Audio of Durbin’s remarks in Committee is available here.

Footage of Durbin’s remarks in Committee is available here for TV Stations.

At the hearing, Durbin also cited Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson, who said: “[U]ndocumented immigrants are not driving violence in Chicago, and that’s why I want our officers focused on community policing and not trying to be the immigration police.”

The bipartisan Illinois TRUST Act was signed into law by then-Governor Bruce Rauner in August 2017.  It prohibits state and local law enforcement from detaining any individual or notifying ICE of a person’s release solely based on ICE’s request without a judicial warrant.  It also prohibits law enforcement from stopping, arresting, searching, or detaining a person solely based on an individual's citizenship or immigration status.