Virginia’s Gov. Northam Vetoes Immigration Enforcement Bills – Again



For the second time, Gov. Ralph Northam has vetoed a bill to prevent the establishment of sanctuary cities in Virginia – a complete reversal of his 2017 campaign promise to sign into law anti-sanctuary cities measures.

In the midst of a tight battle with Republican Ed Gillespie, and with his record as Lt. Governor under the scrutiny, the Democratic gubernatorial candidate Northam claimed he was opposed to sanctuary cities.

“I don’t support sanctuary cities,” Northam declared during an October debate,

He even went so far as to promise to sign legislation that outlaws sanctuary jurisdictions in Virginia if elected.

“If that bill comes to by desk …. I sure will. I’ve always been opposed to sanctuary cities,” said Northam in an interview in the final week of the campaign.

With the end of the campaign came the end of Northam’s fidelity to the rule of law, which was evident last week when he once again killed efforts to ensure Virginia would be sanctuary city-free.

Passed by the Virginia legislature, Senate Bill 1156 was a one-sentence bill stating that no locality shall adopt any ordinance, procedure, or policy intended to restrict the enforcement of federal immigration laws.”

Just days after police announced the arrest of five MS-13 gang members in a brutal stabbing of a 16-year old Virginia boy, Northam vetoed the bill.

In his March 19 veto statement, Northam claimed the bill would “force local law enforcement agencies to use precious resources to perform functions that are the responsibility of federal immigration enforcement agencies.”

Last week’s veto echoed the one issued last year – all the way down to the language used in his veto statement.

Again, the entire text of HB 1257 was less than 20 words and made no mention of local law enforcement actively assisting federal immigration agents.

Nonetheless, in his April 9, 2018 statement, Northam characterized the bill as aiming to “divert state and local law enforcement resources for political purposes.”

In addition to killing the anti-sanctuary cities bill, Northam also vetoed House Bill 2270, which would require local law enforcement notify Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) once the release date of an incarcerated illegal alien becomes known.

The governor claimed signing it would place an “unnecessary requirement” on local police to act as federal agents.

What Ralph Northam refuses to recognize is that his decision to promote sanctuary cities is a betrayal of not only a campaign promise, but the oath he took as governor to protect the residents of the Commonwealth of Virginia.

About Author

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Jennifer joined FAIR as Web Content Writer in 2017 and brings to the role extensive communications and media background. She began her career as a policy research analyst on multiple national and state political campaigns before entering journalism. In addition to spending over a decade writing for several broadcast and print news outlets, Jennifer directed communications strategy for a member of Congress and a military nonprofit.

8 Comments

  1. avatar

    Another of the #DISHONESTDEMOCRATS You can’t trust them because the only thing they are concerned about is getting elected, or staying elected, well, and of course the campaign contributions!

  2. avatar
    LaNell Barrett on

    If you blatantly lie on your resume for a job, are hired…then do nothing you were hired to do. What happens? You are FIRED.

  3. avatar

    Not surprising in the least. It’s always the same with these people. Get tough at election time and then turn around and do the opposite once in office. McCain did that constantly. Run to the right on immigration in primaries and then walk arm in arm with the Democrats on amnesty when back in the Senate. Just like the politicians in Britain who opposed that country leaving the European Union but said they would respect the will of the voters. The voters said leave and now the elite class is saying no we can’t leave. Because they know best naturally.

    Trump made a remark about “s###hole countries”. No need to look overseas. The left has turned every major city on the west coast into s###hole cities. Seattle, Los Angeles, Portland, San Francisco. Mile after mile of homeless tents lining sidewalks and parks, and human waste and needles everywhere. And then a lot of those ever so enlightened people, sick of the messes they have made, both actual and financial, move to adjacent states with lower taxes and vote the same way they did in California. Brain dead idiots. But then, they think that a program to rebuild every structure in the country, aka Green New Deal, is something workable and not an utter fantasy.

  4. avatar

    In light of the governor’s permissive stand on infanticide, I’m not surprised that he would renege on his 2017 campaign promise regarding sanctuary cities.

    A point that we need to keep hammering: The Dems and liberals need a continuing stream into the country of low-skilled, lower class, poorly educated people to prop up their voter base. That’s a major factor in the sanctuary movement. If only lawful residents, with proper ID, could vote, these opportunistic politicians would see their careers drying up.