In recent years, the Senate has blocked similar bills to ban sanctuary cities from heading to the governor's desk. In order to move forward, the House and the Senate will have to iron out differences in their bills. The House version of the bill allows local officials, called “sanctuary policymakers," to be fined up to $5,000 a day. The Senate version does not.
The legislation would require local police to honor requests from federal immigration authorities to detain people who are thought to be in the United States illegally. The bill also requires local jails to fully comply with requests to hold inmates for federal immigration authorities.
Republicans say the measure will uphold the law by removing illegal aliens, and protect Floridians from dangerous criminals. Democrats, however, believe the potential law will hurt the Sunshine State, saying the legislation is an attempt to incite fear in immigrant communities
Florida Democratic Party Spokesperson Luisana Pérez released the following statement:
"Today's vote represents a stunning betrayal of Florida's immigrant communities and will have dire economic consequences in the years to come. SB 168 is an attack on immigrants who have left countries like Venezuela and Cuba and made our state their home. It's also an attack on the business community. By passing SB 168, Republicans have essentially declared war on the industries -- agriculture and tourism -- that make up the backbone of our economy. For the rest of their lives, Republicans in the Senate will have to live with the shameful fact that they chose Donald Trump over the lives of people fleeing the persecution of the Maduro regime and put Florida's economy at risk. This a shameful and dark day in the history of our state."
Liberals have promised to fight the final version of the bill, but all signs point to it reaching Gov. Ron DeSantis' desk and being signed into law.
The Left's inability to follow the letter of the law is nothing new. By attaching sympathy to every issue plaguing our nation, the political Left hopes that Republicans will "do the right thing," and protect those who do not follow our laws. Republicans, however, did do the right thing today. They revitalized the "law of the land," and by passing this legislation, they finally put accountability above empathy.
Sen. Gruters' persistence finally paid off. Vilified by those on the Left leading up to the vote, Gruters remained calm for the sake of Florida's future. While Democrats attempted to paint a misleading narrative, the Sarasota Senator pushed forward, setting an important precedent in a state that turns a blind eye to the problems facing our nation, our state, and our local communities.