Texas Governor Rick Perry will be adding so-called sanctuary city legislation to the ongoing special session of the Texas legislature.
"Gov. Rick Perry on Tuesday added a ban on "sanctuary cities" to the agenda of the special session..despite opposition from outnumbered Democrats concerned about issues including racial profiling. As approved in the recently ended regular session by the Texas House, which has a GOP supermajority, the legislation would bar local governments from preventing law enforcement officers from inquiring into the immigration status of people they detain. The proposal stalled in the Senate because of a rule that generally requires a two-thirds vote of senators to consider a proposal. ...The rule, however, is not in place for the special session...Police chiefs and sheriffs who have come to the Capitol to oppose the idea have said it would burden already-stretched local officers with enforcing federal immigration laws and hamper community policing efforts that rely on building trust to encourage people to report crimes."
Will this bill go after Texas business owners who hire undocumented persons? What penalty will there be for average Texans who have taken advantage of the cheap labor and services offered by undocumented persons?
There will be none of that you can wager.
What we will have instead is the bullying of the weakest amongst us that seems an essential part of the character of the Texas conservative.
This legislative session has been all about diminishing the lives of Texas children and of the poor in Texas.
What we now have as well is the expansion of police state powers with Americans citizens subject to questioning on the basis of skin color.
Such an expansion of the powers of the State of Texas would be consistent with the recent enactment of the forced sonogram bill. The forced sonogram bill mandates that women getting a legal abortion in Texas must also receive a sonogram and, also, be forced to listen to details of the results of the sonogram.
In Texas it will soon be okay for the state to force unwanted medical procedures on free citizens.
Just imagine the libertarian and right-wing screaming if Democrats forced unwanted medical procedures on American citizens.
After passage of a sanctuary city bill, it may well become legal for the state to demand the papers of American citizens for no more reason than a hunch or a guess.
This sure is some small government for you.
It seems that any public policy, no matter how intrusive, is okay if it suits the ideological extremism of Governor Perry and the Texas Republican Party.
(Top Texas politcal blogger Charles Kuffner has also written on this subject.)