Sheriffs: Enforce current immigration laws before changing them

Dania Maxwell/Staff
People standing inside the Collier County Sheriff's Office Substation in Immokalee watch as about 150 people stand outside, protesting the 287(g) policy which allows for the collaboration between the Collier Sheriff's Office and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) on Sunday, October, 21, 2012 in Immokalee, Fla. The protestors marched to the Sheriff's Office to deliver just over 1,700 signatures from Collier County residents who are in opposition to 287(g).

Photo by DANIA MAXWELL // Buy this photo

Dania Maxwell/Staff People standing inside the Collier County Sheriff's Office Substation in Immokalee watch as about 150 people stand outside, protesting the 287(g) policy which allows for the collaboration between the Collier Sheriff's Office and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) on Sunday, October, 21, 2012 in Immokalee, Fla. The protestors marched to the Sheriff's Office to deliver just over 1,700 signatures from Collier County residents who are in opposition to 287(g).

Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk

Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk

Lee County Sheriff Mike Scott. David Albers/ Staff

Photo by DAVID ALBERS // Buy this photo

Lee County Sheriff Mike Scott. David Albers/ Staff

Both Democrats and Republicans have brought forth a ideas on immigration reform in recent weeks, but two local sheriffs have the same suggestion for legislators: Enforce the laws already on the books.

"We have to find a way to enforce more efficiently the laws we already have before we talk about changing them," Collier County Sheriff Kevin Rambosk said. "The challenge with that is you've got to fund it, equip it and staff it properly to handle the amount of individuals you have."

Both Rambosk and Lee County Sheriff Mike Scott said border security is crucial.

"You can strengthen the border, that's nice, but you've got to secure it," Rambosk said.

Scott said talking about immigration reform without a secure border "is like trying to paint the house while it's raining."

"People are still crossing the border every night, right now as we speak," he said. "They talk tough … but at the end of the day, our nation sadly has been asleep at the switch for the last 50 years."

Rambosk praised Collier County's 287(g) program, which allows jail deputies to assess incoming inmates' legal statuses, but acknowledged the program only deals with people already in the criminal justice system.

Lee County was in line to get a 287(g) program like Collier's, but shortly before it went into action, federal officials began making changes to the program, Scott said. It never went into effect in Lee.

"It's another example of the federal government backpedaling," Scott said.

Local and state law enforcement officers should be allowed to pick up the slack of the federal government if it cannot enforce its own immigration laws, Scott said.

"I'd say the same thing that's already been said by perhaps the most famous sheriff, Joe Arpaio (of Arizona): If you're not going to do the job for us, let us do it," he said.

Rambosk said immigration should remain in control of the federal government, but he acknowledged lawmakers will have to find the money to pay for enforcement initiatives.

"While you can say you want to enforce the law, you have to develop a more effective mechanism and find the associated funding that it will take to do it properly," Rambosk said.

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Comments » 3

DFrancis writes:

1986—THE SELL OUT! ARE AMERICANS GOING TO FALL FOR THIS SAD, FINANCIAL LIE AGAIN?

Yes! The Immigration policies are broken and needs to be fixed, because it never was meant to work a 100 percent in the first place? THE AMERICAN TAXPAYER IS GOING TO BE FORCED TO CARRY THE FINANCIAL BURDEN, AS THEY HAVE FOR MANY DECADES? Very few of the politicians who have the gonads, to speak their mind against the privileged that buy and sell the little man/women who have no voice. But we have—if we all band together and bombard Washington with our phone calls and emails. You can do exactly that by joining the growing detonation of angry voices in confronting YOUR lawmakers and sending free faxes through NumbersUSA. We wouldn’t be having these committees now, if the laws were carried out strictly. Immigrating to America legally is, and should be, a meticulous course of action meant to shield the interests of American citizens.

It involves more than simply slipping past the failure called the border fence and then bearing northwards in pursuit of free health care, free primary and secondary education, food stamps, paid by a broken U.S. citizenry taxpayer and a insolvent nation, living in a dream world where debt doesn’t exist—but outrageous spending does? Legal immigration means enduring painstaking barriers as criminal background checks, as a system to detect a criminal elements or concealed associations to terrorists; medical examinations to reveal contagious diseases still prevailing in third-world countries, but long since stamped out here; proof they are financially unwavering so as to avoid these legal immigrants from saddling the U.S. taxpayers. In addition to owning up to being in the country illegally, paying back taxes and further testing of knowledge of government civics and an understanding of English language skills. The truth being as the majority of these people had little money; many of these hurdles were waved.

It was convenient to the U.S. administration at the time. Those who have bypassed the fence into America in order to avoid our immigration inspection are not immigrants. Rather, they are invading criminals, with no claim at all to the welcome mat extended to legal immigrants. Such people do not deserve recognition and should not be rewarded by the United States government, and should be detained and deported according to the law, alongside the corrupt politicians that pander to these illegal alien invaders. As I have repeated many, many times before that if any of our administrations meant to keep people out of America, illegal entry would have found passage as a FELONY? The truth is millions of foreigners have invaded our country, leaving America defenseless to drug dealers, gangs, concealed crime, terrorism, communicable disease, and financial desolation and a flood of illegal migrants and immigrants.

DFrancis writes:

IS IT NO WONDER THE PEOPLE DO NOT TRUST ANY GOVERNMENT, TO CARRY OUT THEIR RULES AND REGULATIONS? SO HERE WE GO AGAIN WITH LYING TO OUR FACES. THEN WHO GETS THE PARAMOUNT BILL FOR ALL THE PROCESSING OF THE WELL UNDERESTIMATED 11 MILLION PEOPLE ALREADY HERE?

THE POLITICIANS NEED TO PROVE THEMSELVES TO THE PEOPLE, BY BUILDING THE 2006 SECURE FENCES NOT MATTER THE COST AND OFFERING NO MORE LAME EXCUSES. IF ISRAELIS CAN KEEP THE PALESTINIAN TERRORISTS OUT OF THE COUNTRY, THEN WE COULD IMITATE THE SAME PLAN? Avid readers should go and investigate the wall itself, which stands between the State of Israel and countries out to destroy their small country. Incidentally—guess who paid for that concrete and steel barrier? The fence is just over 15 feet high and is topped with razor wire cameras, radars and other surveillance equipment will allows Israel to monitor the vast areas that is to be defended using rapid deployment of military vehicles. Other barriers are strictly a wall with towers spreading from miles. WHY ARE WE ANY DIFFERENT, AS TERRORISTS ARE USING DRUG GANGS AID TO STEAL INTO OUR COUNTRY? THE COST OF TWO FORMIDABLE BARRIERS ONCE COMPLETED WOULD STOP THE ILLEGAL MIGRANTS SMUGGLING THEIR CHILDREN—AS MANY ARE STILL UNBORN ATTRACTED BY OUR PUBLIC ASSISTANCE PROGRAMS COSTING THROUGH TIME, TRILLIONS OF TAX DOLLARS FROM FEDERAL AND STATE FUNDS. ONLY THE TOP SKILLED WORKERS SHOULD BE ISSUED EMPLOYMENT VISAS AND SOME FORM OF STRICTLY REGULATED GUEST WORKER FOR THE AGRICULTURE, BUT NOTHING PERMANENT.

In the 1986 amnesty all these procedures were rushed through, so many criminals slipped through the cracks. Then instead of 3.1 million illegal aliens being legitimized, the numbers rose to over 5 million, because the fact that immigration amnesty was to be signed into law that brought a deluge of uneducated, illiterates who swarmed borders and used the airlines with what money they had to pantomime a tourist, with no desire to return to their own country. We added even more poverty to our own low income people, that was a gold mine to incorrigible business and corporations, who still exploit foreigners and paying no taxes today. This should be a troubling warning that we are setting ourselves up for the same nightmare as before. What is that old saying or variant?

--“Insanity is doing the same thing in the same way & expecting a different outcome?”

DFrancis writes:

In conclusion, the only poll worth its salt is Rasmussen Reports as most of the others are craftily worded to gain satisfaction for the open border zealots and special interest entities. By observing the thousands of comments, blogs and articles not associated with the Liberal Progressives one can collect a much better indicator of what the average working American is thinking and that is NOT a Path to Citizenship or AMNESTY?

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