Since President Trump took office, 33 states have introduced bills that would thwart illegal immigration and penalize sanctuary cities, signaling a growing movement in favor of the new administration’s policies.
The Migration Policy Institute reported in May that Texas led the effort by passing a “sweeping law” that ends some of its jurisdiction’s sanctuary policies and allows police officers to ask the immigration status of those they arrest or detain.
Since then, “at least 32 other states have introduced immigration enforcement bills,” and “as of May 8, 2017, 24 states were considering anti-sanctuary bills,” the Institute reported.
Four states have already passed anti-sanctuary bills during their 2017 sessions, including Georgia and Indiana, which enacted laws restricting universities from adopting sanctuary policies, and Mississippi, which went further by banning both universities and local jurisdictions from adopting these policies.
The Institute reported these laws will likely face legal challenges, while the Texas law is already facing three lawsuits.
However, this legislative movement indicates a return to an era “where lawmakers introduced restrictive bills specifically designed to make their states inhospitable to unauthorized immigrants,” the Institute reported.
President Trump has promised to crackdown on illegal immigration, focusing on those with criminal records. Arrests at the U.S.-Mexico border have plummeted since Trump took office, with numbers hitting a 17-year low in April.