Biden’s DOJ Threatens To Sue Iowa For Enforcing Immigration Law

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Jason Hopkins Immigration Reporter
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The Department of Justice is threatening a lawsuit over Iowa’s new illegal immigration law, the latest move in the Biden administration’s effort to stop GOP states from addressing the ongoing border crisis.

Justice Department Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Brian Boynton wrote to Iowa Republicans Gov. Kim Reynolds and Iowa Republican Attorney General Brenna Bird on Thursday, threatening to sue the state unless they suspend enforcement of the newly-enacted Senate Bill 2340, the Des Moines Register first reported.

“SF 2340 is preempted by federal law and violates the United States Constitution,” Boynton wrote in the letter, arguing that the Iowa law violated the Immigration and Nationality Act and “intrudes into a field that is occupied by the government and is preempted.”

He gave Iowa officials a deadline of May 7 to put a halt to the law or else the Justice Department will take action.

SF 2340, signed into law by Reynolds in April, authorizes state and local law enforcement officials to arrest illegal immigrants who have been previously deported or prohibited from entering the U.S. The law also gives state courts the authority to deport them. (RELATED: Georgia Gov Signs Bill Into Law Requiring Sheriffs Cooperate With ICE After Laken Riley Murder)

YouTube screen grab, NBC News.

The law is largely reflective of a Texas bill signed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott in December, which also gave law enforcement officials in the state the authority to arrest and deport foreign nationals living unlawfully in the country. Similar to the threats the Justice Department is lodging at Iowa, the Biden administration sued Texas over their law, which now remains on hold as its legitimacy is being challenged in the courtroom.

Iowa and Texas are among a handful of GOP-led states that have recently passed immigration enforcement laws, such as Tennessee, Florida, Georgia and Kansas, with their governors arguing that they have no choice but to sign these bills because the Biden administration isn’t doing nearly enough to address the ongoing immigration crisis.

In response to the Justice Department threat, Reynolds echoed these same sentiments. “The only reason we had to pass this law is because the Biden administration refuses to enforce the laws already on the books,” the governor said in a statement provided to the Register. “I have a duty to protect the citizens of Iowa. Unlike the federal government, we will respect the rule of law and enforce it.”

Iowa’s attorney general was also steadfast in her response to the lawsuit threat. “Our message to Biden is this: Iowa will not back down and stand by as our state’s safety hangs in the balance,” Bird stated. “If Biden refuses to stop the border invasion and keep our communities safe, Iowa will do the job for him.”

The U.S.-Mexico border has experienced record-setting illegal immigration under the current administration. Since President Joe Biden took office, at least 6 million encounters have taken place at the southern border.

Neither the Justice Department nor Reynolds’ office immediately responded to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

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