A U.S. representative from California has introduced a bill to block Title IV funds to colleges and universities that refuse to cooperate with federal immigration authorities.
Representative Duncan Hunter (R-CA) introduced the No Funding for Sanctuary Campuses Act in late December to define “sanctuary campus” and create financial penalties for any “institutions of higher education that violates immigration laws.” The bill, H.R. 6530, was co-sponsored by Representatives Tom McClintock (R-CA) and Lou Barletta (R-PA).
“It’s by no means unreasonable to expect the nation’s higher learning institutions to follow the law the same way we expect states and localities to abide by the law,” Hunter told the Washington Examiner in an interview published on Tuesday. “If a school wants federal money, an open declaration that it’s a sanctuary should disqualify it for federal support.
“It’s free to do that, of course, but there should be a consequence in the form of withheld federal funding — it’s that simple,” the California congressman stated.
The bill defines a Sanctuary Campus as:
(A) has in effect an ordinance, policy, or practice that prohibits or restricts any institutional entity, official, or personnel from—
(i) sending, receiving, maintaining, or exchanging with any Federal, State, or local government entity information regarding the citizenship or immigration status (lawful or unlawful) of any individual;
(ii) complying with a request lawfully made by the Secretary of Homeland Security under section 236 or 287 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1226 or 1357) to comply with a detainer for, or notify about the release of, an individual; or
(iii) otherwise complying with section 642 of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (8 U.S.C. 1373);
(B) brings in, or harbors, an alien in violation of section 274(a)(1)(A) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (8 U.S.C. 1324(a)(1)(A));
(C) renders an alien who lacks a lawful immigration status in the United States eligible for any postsecondary education benefit provided on the basis of residence within a State (or a political subdivision of a State) to the same extent as a citizen or national of the United States is eligible for such benefit; or
(D) has in effect a policy or practice that either prohibits, or in effect prevents, the Secretary of Homeland Security from gaining access to campuses or access to students (who are 17 years of age or older) on campuses, for purposes of Department of Homeland Security recruiting in a manner that is at least equal in quality and scope to the access to campuses and to students that is provided to any other employer.
The bill provides an exemption for any person who is a victim of or a witness to a criminal offense.
The bill would also penalize the institutions for providing any public benefit including in-state tuition.
“It is the sense of the Congress that providing the public benefit of in-state tuition to an alien who lacks lawful immigration status in the United States creates an incentive for illegal immigration and encourages and induces aliens to come to, enter,” Hunter wrote in the bill.
The bill was introduced following actions by many campuses across the country to declare sanctuary status following the election of Donald Trump. Breitbart provided extensive coverage of these campus protests and the actions by university and college administrators. The President-Elect made cracking down on sanctuary jurisdictions a priority during his campaign.
A similar bill was also introduced late last month by Rep. Andy Harris (R-MD), Breitbart Texas reported this week. The Federal Immigration Law Compliance Act of 2016 takes a broader approach of addressing both sanctuary campuses and other jurisdictions with similar policies.
“Congress has the responsibility to protect the rule of law in our country and provide for the safety of our citizens. We need to focus on protecting American citizens and those who are in this country legally, instead of providing shelter for those who have violated our immigration law and entered this country illegally. If any entity refuses to comply with federal immigration law, they should be denied federal money until they come into compliance,” Congressman Harris said in a written statement obtained by Breitbart Texas.
Both bills were filed late in the 114th Congress. To be considered by the 115th Congress, the bills will need to be re-introduced.