As a Republican, I don’t particularly enjoy siding with Governor Brown on an issue let alone on one as emotionally charged as sanctuary cities. Not sure our reasoning was the same but to his credit he took Senator Kevin DeLeon’s SB54 and with encouragement from the California Police Chiefs Association multiplied DeLeon’s exclusions twelvefold, from 65 crimes to 800.
My oath as an elected member of the San Diego County Republican Party requires I uphold and defend the U.S. Constitution. My hopes of seeing an inspiring California GOP depend on it. That being the case I’m taking a minority position opposite three of our San Diego Republican representatives, each of whom I respect and have appeared on Fox News this past week.
I take this role remembering the young attorney, John Adams, who defended the British at the Boston Massacre. Despite being loyal to the Revolution, Adams defended them and risked reputation out of a desire that the law be upheld over his personal beliefs.
Here are nine reasons I’m hesitant to support the President and a number of friends who oppose Sanctuary Cities.
Immigration is not an enumerated power “we the people” delegated to the Federal Government. I don’t have much confidence in their having jurisdiction in this area in light of the competency demonstrated on healthcare and the budget. If we wish to delegate immigration to them we can amend the Constitution.
Federalism. Those areas not enumerated are left to the people and the states. I would suggest fifty different experiments and approaches to this issue not one. Each state learning from the others. Anything we can do to get government closer to the people is a win.
The freedom to associate with whomever we wish is an inalienable right that precedes Government. It is fundamental to another great idea of which Republicans are fond, free markets. The free flow of labor is required for such to exist and constituted, put into legal form, by the 1st Amendment.
The tragic death of Kate Steinle is the singular and most common reason my friends oppose sanctuary cities. Consider the following;
1. Zarate was acquitted by a jury specifically chosen by the prosecutor that after hearing the evidence and deliberating on it found, no intent. No malice. No forethought.
2. Zarate had no recorded history of violence.
3. The gun, a Sig Sauer P239 pistol, is a backup emergency weapon used by law enforcement that has a light trigger mode and no safety.
4. Bullet hit the ground 12’ in front of Zarate before traveling 78’ and hitting Kate.
5. Direct witness testimony didn’t collaborate the prosecutor’s case.
The Collingwood study on the effectiveness of sanctuary cities on crime is inconclusive, providing statistics neither Democrat nor Republican can use. It reveals that crime statistics don’t improve or worsen in either direction. While murder rates have climbed in the sanctuary cities of Chicago and Las Vegas they have as well in cities that aren’t, San Antonio and Texas.
Immigrant vs. Native Born Criminality.
This one surprised me. Native born Americans are three times more likely to commit crime than their immigrant counterparts. If individuals in Group ‘A’ are three times more likely to commit violent crime than individuals in Group ‘B’, then a municipality with scarce resources should focus on Group ‘A’. A shrewd city council doesn’t divert resources from the three crime victims of Group ‘A’ to pursue the one crime victim from Group ‘B’.
Fusion of Locke with Marx
Locke and Jefferson are about the individual. All men created in the image of God. Inalienable rights. Marx is about the safety of the State. With Marx, as with the Incas and the Pro-Choice Movement, the individual is expendable and must be aborted for the salvation of the group. Inalienable rights then become privileges bestowed by the State.
The terminology used by the opponents of the free flow of immigration sounds strangely familiar to Marx. Notice the use of a “collective” noun with a singular verb. They make the State a metaphysical person. Stating “our nation” is under “attack” when in fact most Americans are not but benefit economically from immigrant labor.
National Security & Terrorism
If Nation “A” is truly concerned with terror it shouldn’t misuse the lives of its sons and daughters by intervening in 150 nations where their freedoms are not being threatened. Acknowledge cause and effect. “Blowback”. That being said the “odds” of an American losing their life to a terrorist? Probably less than drowning in a bathtub.
Taxes & Welfare
Do aliens pay their share and abuse welfare? Education? The school taxes are paid by a property tax with the rent from the immigrant. Roads? Paid by the immigrant at the pump. Other government services? Paid each time an immigrant makes a purchase with a sales tax. Social Security? The alien pays but doesn’t collect. Which demographic abuses our welfare system the most given current population percentages versus recipients? You might be surprised.
Bottom line. I care about public safety as well but like Augustine and Aquinas I make a distinction between a crime and a vice. Crimes carry with them intent and encroach on their neighbor. Vices do not. It is government’s role to defend us from the first but not the second. Deport the violent alien but look neither here nor there for the rest. Instead focus on the legislator encroaching on our pursuit of happiness and freedoms with law that ignores our ideals and destroys our economy. The free flow of immigration is a prerequisite to a prosperous one.
The solution? I still pledge allegiance to the great ideas constituted in our founding documents. If we uphold them as Cato’s Immigration Policy Analyst Alex Nowrasteh states, we eliminate the black market in immigration just as we eliminated the harms of Prohibition by removing unjust law and allowing Americans to pursue happiness and swing their arms until they reach their neighbor’s nose.
Eric Andersen is a member of the Central Committee of the San Diego County Republican Party and Co-Founder of the Republican Liberty Caucus of San Diego County. He is a Co-Founder of im2moro.com, former Rock Church Citizen of the Year and former Caucus Chair for the 71st Assembly District.