Published: Sat, July 01, 2017
Global | By Maureen Mccoy

Kate's Law: House passes bill inspired by shooting death of Kate Steinle

Kate's Law: House passes bill inspired by shooting death of Kate Steinle

There are more than 300 "sanctuary cities" in the United States - including New York City, San Francisco and Los Angeles - that have written or unwritten policies against complying with immigration officials.

Critics say the bills could hurt efforts of cities to get immigrants to collaborate with state and local law enforcement.

Trump argued the bills would close "dangerous loopholes exploited by criminals, gang members, drug dealers, killers, terrorists", and told the family members gathered that they'd "lost the people that you love because our government refused to enforce our nation's immigration laws".

The U.S. House of Representatives has passed "Kate's Law", a bill inspired by the 2015 shooting death of Pleasanton native Kathryn "Kate" Steinle on a San Francisco pier by an oft-deported undocumented immigrant with a history of criminal convictions.

Kate's Law would increase maximum penalties for immigrants who were deported or denied entry to the US and are then caught re-entering or living in the country without legal permission.

He also highlighted his discussions with the family of 21-year-old murder victim Carly Snyder of Northumberland County, who was stabbed 37 times by an illegal immigrant from Honduras in 2005.

Even though the House vote is partially assured, the Senate will determine the future of both laws.

President Trump supports the passage of Kate's Law (H.R. 3004).

House Judiciary Committee Chair Bob Goodlatte (R-Virginia), who introduced both bills, wrote an op-ed in The Hill on Thursday, saying that the two bills are "needed desperately".

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In late spring, freed from custody and in San Francisco, Lopez-Sanches stole a.40-caliber pistol from an unlocked auto belonging to U.S. Bureau of Land Management office, leading to his shooting Steinle at Pier 14 two years ago by a repeat felon who had been deported several times before illegal reentry. If signed into law, the No Sanctuary for Criminals Act would restrict awarding federal grant money to cities that bar local police from turning over criminal aliens to federal immigration authorities.

While the bills were widely expected to pass the Republican-controlled House, they are a welcome win for a White House that has seen little recent legislative success.

On Wednesday, Trump met with more than a dozen families of Americans who were victimized by illegal immigrants, including Steve Ronnebeck, the father of Grant Ronnebeck, who was shot and killed by a convicted felon who was in the country illegally in 2015. "Or is the objective of our government to protect felons who have entered our country illegally, broken our laws and threatened our people?"

The bills simply mandate harsher prison sentences on those illegals who commit crimes - crimes above and beyond their illegal border crossings, that is - and bars sanctuary cities from receiving federal dollars.

The bills face an uncertain future in the Senate, however, where they could be subject to a Democratic filibuster.

Trump says he is "calling on all lawmakers to vote for these bills and to save American lives". Democrats said the bills represented "another step in President Trump's Mass Deportation plan".

Acting Director Thomas Homan told reporters during an off-camera gaggle he didn't say immigrants coming into the country illegally commit more crimes than us citizens.

The House of Representatives on Thursday passed a pair of bills aimed at stiffening penalties for undocumented immigrants as well as the so-called sanctuary cities that shield them.

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