Most Americans who object to illegal immigration do so on principle grounds. They believe it is unfair for undocumented people to enter the United States and receive all the country’s benefits without going through the process of legal immigration. They believe these undocumented immigrants “cut in line” to obtain citizenship and ultimately hurt those residents who are here legally.
That said, many Americans recognize it is virtually impossible to deport the over 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States and understand that undertaking such a project would be a huge waste of government resources. As such, the practice most favored is to deport those undocumented immigrants who commit violent crimes and pose a danger to Americans.
But it turns out that this isn’t happening either, at least not in New York. According to a new report from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), New York City released 440 illegal immigrants labeled “dangerous” over a period of three months. Ten percent of these released criminals went on to commit more crimes and were rearrested. Not only does this arresting process cost the government in time, effort and money, but releasing these criminals poses a danger to the surrounding community.
New York’s “sanctuary city” policy tells city employees and law enforcement not to cooperate with federal immigration agents who seek to deport undocumented immigrants. However, under the sanctuary city law, the city is supposed to turn over illegal immigrants with felony convictions within the past five years when the federal government has a judicial warrant. Based on the ICE study, that hasn’t happened.
What benefit does the sanctuary city policy give anyone besides the convicted felons? Does New York want to keep these felons in its city borders? One would hope not, but based on this ICE report, it just isn’t clear.