Voters may get to directly repeal 'sanctuary state' laws via referendum
A group in Oregon has already submitted a petition with 25% more signatures than required to qualify for the ballot a referendum on repealing that state's "sanctuary state" law. In neighboring California, efforts are underway to qualify a similar measure for California voters.
Valerie Richardson reports in the Washington Times:
There's virtually no chance that the uber-progressive Oregon legislature would ever repeal the state's oldest-in-the-nation sanctuary law, which is why locals worried about illegal immigration have turned to the voters.
The Stop Oregon Sanctuaries campaign submitted roughly 110,000 signatures last week to qualify an anti-sanctuary measure for the November ballot, more than the 88,000 required, stunning liberal activists and laying the groundwork for a landmark ballot battle.
"This has national ramifications and our opponents know that," said Cynthia Kendoll, president of Oregonians for Immigration Reform, which led the petition drive. "The thing that people don't realize is that very seldom do citizens get to vote on immigration issues. They're always legislated upon us. And that's particularly the case in Oregon. We never get a say."
Meanwhile, in California:
Don Rosenberg, an "angel" father whose son Drew was killed in a 2010 car crash in San Francisco with a Honduras man who had entered the country illegally but was granted temporary protected status ... is spearheading the Fight Sanctuary State campaign, which was cleared Tuesday to begin gathering signatures for a proposed initiative, the Community Protection Act, to reverse state laws on sanctuary status and driver's licenses for illegal immigrants [sic].
The initiative, which needs 365,880 signatures to qualify for the 2020 ballot, comes after organizers pulled a previous referendum campaign to repeal Senate Bill 54, the 2017 law restricting state and local cooperation with federal immigration authorities.
Fight Sanctuary State has framed the campaign as a battle between citizens and the Democratic state legislature and governor, insisting that "only the Community Protection Act will end sanctuary policies in California."
"Who will save California from illegal immigrant [sic] violence?" says one social-media post. "Not Sacramento! Not the courts!"
Guerrilla highway sign in Califonria (screen shot via Washington Examiner).
If you believe this poll, Californians support sanctuary laws by a 56-to-41 point margin. I am not sure that I do believe that, but I do know that the legislature is far more radical than the voting public as a whole.
Meanwhile, back in Oregon, Cynthia Kendoll has reasons for optimism:
In 2014, her group qualified a veto referendum of Oregon's newly passed law giving driver cards to illegal immigrants. Voters repealed the state law by 66 to 34 percent, even though Ms. Kendoll said her side was out-fundraised by 11 to 1.
"When we did Measure 88 they were very confident, even cocky, that they had the state sewn up," she said. "And they just got blown away. So this time I think they're going, 'We can't let that happen again.'"
Let the people speak!