After Arpaio is Stripped of Immigration Powers, Conservatives Counter With A New Anti-Immigrant Bill
PHOENIX, Arizona — After the recent decision by federal authorities to limit the power of Maricopa County sheriff ‘s deputies to enforce U.S. immigration laws, Arizona lawmakers are renewing a push to grant local police the ability to detain and question suspected undocumented immigrants.
A campaign in favor of the “Support Our Law Enforcement and Safe Neighborhoods Act” was launched after last week’s announcement that Maricopa County Sheriff Joe Arpaio had his powers limited by federal immigration authorities.
Arpaio had one of the largest forces in the nation deputized to enforce immigration laws on the streets and in county jails under an agreement known as 287 (g). But John Morton, assistant secretary of Homeland Security, said Arpaio’s sweeps were not consistent with the program’s new priorities. Under a revised 287 (g) agreement Arpaio’s enforcement powers are limited to the county jails. He can no longer conduct traffic stops in search of undocumented immigrants under the program.