IN Congressman submits bill to lock up politicians who establish - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

IN Congressman submits bill to lock up politicians who establish sanctuary cities

Representative Todd Rokita (R-Indiana) (Source: WAVE 3 News) Representative Todd Rokita (R-Indiana) (Source: WAVE 3 News)

INDIANAPOLIS (WAVE) - Representative Todd Rokita (R-Indiana) is taking aim at sanctuary cities and the politicians who shelter immigrants living there who came into the country illegally.

Rokita is introducing a controversial bill, called the Stopping Lawless Actions of Politicians, or SLAP Act, that would hold local and state politicians criminally liable for not upholding federal immigration laws.

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His bill proposes penalties of up to five years in jail and up to $1 million in fines if convicted.

Rokita said immigration laws are there for a reason and politicians need to be held accountable for not upholding those laws.

"You know, if you're a local or state elected official who doesn't follow the law and in fact, acts like a criminal him or herself, then we ought to treat you like a criminal and lock you up too," Rep. Rokita said. "And that's the felony part of this."

Rokita said his bill is getting positive feedback from other Congressmen looking to uphold immigration laws. But not all in his state agree.

Representative Andre Carson (D-Indiana) sent this statement about the SLAP Act:

"This bill would not only criminalize immigrants, but also those seeking to make their communities safer. Officials have a responsibility to protect their citizens, but this bill would erode trust between local police and their communities, undermine local authority, punish jurisdictions who engage in sensible community policing, and ultimately make many communities across the country less safe."

WAVE 3 News will continue to follow the bill's progress.

Rokita is one of the Republicans challenging incumbent Democrat Senator Joe Donnelly for his senate seat in 2018.

Donnelly sent us this statement in response for comment on Rokita's bill:

"I oppose sanctuary cities. I have long supported policies to strengthen our borders and effectively enforce our immigration laws. I also supported the Senate-passed comprehensive, bipartisan immigration reform in 2013 that would have added 20,000 new border patrol agents, and I will review any proposal that comes before the Senate."

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