A Brownsville Herald story described the so-called Sanctuary Cities bill as “similar to Arizona’s strict anti-illegal immigration law.” It is not.

About school district police, the same story reported a state rep. as being “optimistic that Texas school districts won’t have to inquire about the immigration status of their students under so-called sanctuary city legislation pending in Austin.” The bill does not require such of any police officer.

In story after story the bill has been said to be similar to the Arizona bill which has caused so much consternation in the press and with the Left. The Texas bill banning Sanctuary City policies is not similar. It does not, in any manner, mandate that a law enforcement officer inquire about anyone’s immigration status.

The Texas bill leaves such things to the discretion of police officers. It bans the various local governments which employ the police officers from taking away their ability to inquire about immigration status. The bill cleared the House State Affairs Committee this week.

Christy Hoppe at the Dallas Morning News got it right. “Under the original bill, police and others in law enforcement must be free to ask suspects or others being detained whether they are a legal resident. If an entity, such as a city or a police department, created a policy that bans such questioning, it would lose state grants and face a potential lawsuit from the attorney general,” she reported.

In other words, the bill simply makes sure police are able to exercise professional discretion; it does not cause police to check the immigration status of anyone.

Robert Pratt is host of the top-rated Pratt on Texas radio program which can be heard at www.PrattonTexas.com

© 2011 Pratt on Texas

Pratt on Texas

Robert Pratt has been active in Texas Republican politics since the Reagan re-elect in 1984. He has served as Lubbock County Republican chairman, and in 2006 founded the Pratt on Texas radio network, providing the news and commentary of Texas on both radio and podcast. Learn more at www.PrattonTexas.com.