Illegal immigration has been a hot topic for several years now, and has emerged once again as a top priority of the Republican majority in the Texas Legislature. One state representative is tackling the issue by filing a measure that would allow illegal aliens to be dumped at the offices of congressmen.
State Rep. Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) has filed a measure that would allow any law enforcement agency that has custody of an illegal immigrant to take the illegal to 'the office of a U.S. Senator or Representative' and leave them there.
WOAI news reports the measure also allows county sheriff's deputies or city police officers to 'request an agent or employee of the United States Senator or United State Representative to sign a document acknowledging the release or discharge of the illegal immigrant at the senator's or representative's office.'
The measure would cover individuals who are not a citizen or nation of the United States and who is unlawfully present in the U.S.
Kolkhorst admits the measure is a 'cry for help' to convince federal officials to secure the border, but she says she is serious about getting the measure approved by the Legislature.
As far as what the Senator or Congressman is supposed to do with the illegal immigrant the measure doesn't specify, but it does call on the law enforcement agency to 'maintain a record of each illegal immigrant released or discharged who is not transferred to the custody of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.'
This is just one of several bills introduced in the state capitol that would deny jobs, housing, and government benefits to those who are in the country illegally. At least 25 bills addressing illegal immigration have been filed. Five of those bills include language that is similar to Arizona's law, which made it a crime not to carry immigration documents and gave law enforcement officers authority to detain anyone they suspected of being an illegal immigrant.
Five such bills filed here in Texas would require law enforcement agencies to check immigration status and report any immigration violations to the federal Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Those bills are SB 126, HB 623, SB 259, HB 311, and HB 183.
Several thousand people are expected to protest and denounce the measures at the state capitol today, and to call on the federal government, not the state, to handle immigration laws.
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