That sentiment was encapsulated in a piece of legislation, the “Trust Act”, that has now been amended by Connecticut’s current Democrat dominated State Senate. And the changes are stunning, possibly even dangerous.
The “Trust Act", which prevents law enforcement officials in Connecticut from enforcing ICE detainers, did not incorporate whatever “guidance from the appropriate federal agencies on screening measures” in the bill. Illegal intruders admitted by stealth into the United States are unvetted; in all such cases, it is impossible to know who they are or where they are located – unless the illegal intruder brings himself to the attention of law enforcement officials, most often through the commission of a crime. It is impossible to assert that ICE nodded its assent to a bill that created sanctuaries from ICE, but the initial bill did allow reasonable exemptions – cases in which serious criminals would be reported to ICE by state officials.
The updated version of the "Trust Act” now passed in Connecticut’s Senate eliminates these exemptions written into the original law.
Senator Rob Sampson, who voted in favor of the original legislation, rose in the Senate to speak against a revision that eliminated exemptions that made the "Trust Act" palatable to him.
Sampson provided an account of his opposition: “Early this morning around 2:30 AM, the State Senate passed one of the most dangerous bills offered by the majority this session - an expansion of the state’s sanctuary policy for illegal immigrants, the "Trust Act". This bill eliminates the seven critical exemptions that still remain in our current law which allow local law enforcement to cooperate with federal immigration authorities.
“Those exemptions include situations where an undocumented person in custody has been convicted of a felony; is subject to pending criminal charges, has an outstanding arrest warrant, is identified as a known gang member, is identified as a possible match in the federal Terrorist Screening Database, is subject to a final deportation or removal order; or presents an unacceptable risk to public safety.”
Sampson’s valiant defense of public safety, as well as his objections to a revision in the "Trust Act" that vitiates the intent of the law – to provide a safe space for peaceful and law abiding illegal aliens and their children while, at the same time, protecting the general public from prosecutable criminal aliens – may be found in the following YouTube clip:
Here Sampson lists the exemptions found in the original "Trust Act": Connecticut law officials may cooperate with ICE detainer procedures if the illegal intruder: already has been convicted of a felony; is subject to a pending criminal charge; has not answered an outstanding state warrant; has been identified in federal data bases as a gang member; is identified as matching someone listed in a terrorist data base; is subject to a final order of deportation; proposes an unacceptable risk to public safety.
These reasonable exemptions have been expunged in the new revised legislation that now has passed the State Senate, and the revision, Sampson notes, leaves the very people seeking sanctuary from ICE exposed to the predations of a criminal element that, thanks to the revision, may regard the new law as a permit to continue criminal activity in Connecticut free of the threat of deportation.
“Contrary to the overt misinformation campaign put forward by proponents of this legislation, Sampson writes, “it does not protect ‘immigrants.’ Listen carefully as they seem to forget the word ‘illegal’ or ‘undocumented’ as if it doesn’t matter. Nevertheless, the bill doesn’t protect ‘illegal aliens’ either. It protects only one group of people – undocumented aliens who are also criminals wanted by the federal immigration authorities.
“It’s a bizarre move. I was told the whole point of the 'Trust Act' was to encourage illegal aliens to report criminals in their communities based on the knowledge that they could ‘trust’ local police and were safe from being reported to federal immigration officers. This bill ultimately applies the same protection to the criminal next door!
“The result, of course, is that the public safety of all Connecticut residents will be compromised, citizens and non-citizens alike – even otherwise law-abiding undocumented immigrants.”
In the Senate, all Republicans and one Democrat voted against the dangerous revision. The revised bill should slide easily through the House, and it is doubtful that anyone in the state – legal immigrants, illegal immigrants or native born citizens – will be safer once it has passed into law.