Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell is pursuing a deal with federal officials that would allow state troopers to enforce immigration law, effectively expanding statewide a program that a handful of Virginia counties have implemented.
The move comes as state Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli issued a legal opinion saying state police officers can check the immigration status of anyone they stop or arrest.
Though the decision prompted a call for the governor to codify that decision in state law, McDonnell’s office said he is already working toward giving state police new enforcement powers.
“He just feels there’s been a breakdown at the federal government to enforce our … immigration laws and protect our borders. This is just trying to make sure that Virginians are kept safe,” McDonnell spokeswoman Stacey Johnson told FoxNews.com.
KEN CUCCINELLI VS. THE GOVERNMENT