Many were surprised earlier this week when Jerry Brown, the Governor of California vetoed a bill in his State that would have ultimately turned California into a sanctuary for immigration.
Had the bill AB 1081, which has been nicknamed the “anti-Arizona bill” been passed, it would have stopped local law authorities from following any federal detention requests against an individual. This would have been of benefit to those living and working illegally in the State for minor offences, punishment for extremely serious and violent felonies would not have been effected.
Governor Brown had concerns that the bill was “fatally flawed” due to potential exemptions that would have applied to felons that had committed crimes such as trafficking illegal weapons and child abuse. He stated, “I believe it’s unwise to interfere with a sheriff’s discretion to comply with a detainer issued for people with those kinds of troubling criminal records”.
Those in support of the bill claimed its importance would have been a necessary measure to counter legislation in Arizona that has caused racial tensions. Arizona state law that has recently been upheld by the U.S Supreme Court has been accused of allowing racial profile by law enforcement. The law in Arizona has been accused of allowing police to target citizens of Latin American descent for bogus reasons.
According to recent Government issued figures, as of the start of 2010 California already has the highest population of illegal immigrants. Given the facts it is not hard to see why Governor Brown decided to veto the bill.