Laken Riley Murder Forces Georgia Republicans to Draft Unwanted Anti-Migration Bill

Laken Riley

Amid the public uproar over the murder of nursing student Laken Riley, Georgia’s Republican leadership is debating a bill to reduce the damage caused by President Joe Biden’s flood of illegal migrants into the state.

Much of the backroom debate is focused on the draft legislation by Rep. Jesse Petrea (R-166) that would set criminal penalties against local sheriffs who do not alert federal agencies when they are holding illegal migrants in jails, said D.A. King. He is the founder of the Dustin Inman Society, which advocates for state-level curbs on illegal immigration.

The Petrea bill is important, said King, because the sheriffs’ failures to report their jailed illegal immigrants for deportation are turning the state into a sanctuary for 500,000 illegal immigrants, including Riley’s alleged killer, he told Breitbart News.

Republican leaders and legislators are arguing over the bill, he said, and “the worst thing that could possibly happen is they may take out or reduce the criminal penalties [on sheriffs] and put in financial penalties or which effectively hit the voters of those jurisdictions,” not the sheriffs.

The state legislature’s annual calendar gives the GOP majorities until Thursday midnight to pass the HB 1105 bill through the House, he added.

On February 1, Petrea described the need for his bill:

Unfortunately, several Georgia sheriffs are currently refusing to report to federal immigration authorities. Indeed, in 2021, Gwinnett County Sheriff Kebo Taylor stated at his swearing in ceremony, “…what we will not be doing is notifying ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) of anybody’s immigration status in the jail or any of our facilities.” He also explained that he would not honor ICE detainers for wanted illegals.

There are currently 1,579 criminal illegals in Georgia state prisons with ICE detainers alone. Many of these are for extremely violent crimes to include murder (182), child molestation (241), rape (179), aggravated child molestation (116), etc. This number does not include local jails.

The Republican establishment’s long-standing reluctance to deal with the huge inflow of illegals was spotlighted on Monday when Kemp dodged questions about what Georgia Republicans should do to prevent another in-state murder by an illegal migrant.

Kemp did not criticize the state’s four sanctuary city jurisdictions, including Athens-Clarke County, where one of President Joe Biden’s six million migrants allegedly murdered nursing student Laken Riley on February 15.

“Governor, I know there’s already talk in the legislature about passing state-level immigration measures: Is there anything you want to see lawmakers accomplish in the next few weeks?” a reporter asked Kemp during a press conference at the state’s Chamber of Commerce.

“Yeah, um, I wouldn’t want to comment too much on anything that they’re starting to work on,” Kemp responded.

I really appreciate what Speaker [Jon Burns R-159,] put out. I appreciate what Representative [Houston] Gaines [R-120] … has been talking about doing. So we look forward to working with them on those issues, but I don’t really want to comment too much on the specifics.

Kemp then tried to divert attention from possible state actions by calling for a policy reversal by the federal officials who have kept the border open for three years.

A second reporter asked; “Governor, when you say ‘Hold the federal government accountable for its failures,’ What do you mean by that?”

Secure the border. I mean, it’s not that hard to do. For the last two years, Republican governors from all over the country — people from New Hampshire and Montana — are begging the president to secure the southern border. This is what we feared would happen because we have seven and a half, eight and a half million people that have come in our country illegally. And then we have these people that are here illegally breaking our laws, and nobody’s telling us who they are, where they are. That’s all we’ve been asking for. And to secure the border and we’re willing to help do that.

Kemp has repeatedly tried to shift public attention away from state-level options while blaming the pro-migration Biden administration. “This is a federal issue, this is an issue that the president can take action on,” Kemp told Fox News on Sunday after the Riley murder.

“My experience watching Brian Kemp in power is that it’s very possible, if not probable, that Brian Kemp will string this along until the outrage goes away from that poor girl being killed,” King added.

The Republican establishment — and the establishment media sites — also suppress public debate over the state’s quiet support for the rapidly growing population of roughly 500,000 illegal migrants, said King:

Brian Kemp does not want to discuss it, so it’s not discussed …. If illegal immigration creeps into the [political] conversation, it is always [re]directed to the border, the border, the border. Illegal immigration in Georgia has been a forbidden topic and will be again when this when this murder story goes away.

Kemp’s redirection and silence is in sharp contrast to his pro-enforcement campaign promises in 2018:

The GOP’s finger-pointing and silence help state officials avoid enforcement of the variety of state laws that deter illegal migration in the state, King added.

For example, the state requires licensed companies and government contractors to electronically verify the legal status of job seekers.  But “I would challenge anyone to find me a [official penalty or] sanction in Georgia for a violation of the E-Verify mandate,” said King.

The state also ignores the “sanctuary city” policies that protect illegals from state laws — and so that helped attract Riley’s murder to Athens.

The public wants the laws enforced, said King. He funded a poll of 500 Republican primary voters showing that 81 percent support criminal penalties against sanctuary cities that protect illegal immigrants, and 85 percent want enforcement of the two E-Verify laws.

National polls show growing anger about the federal inflow of migrants — and majority GOP concern about the pocketbook damage done to American families by illegal migration.

On February 27, the Washington Post described the open and widespread exploitation of wage-cutting, rent-spiking illegal workers in Dalton, Ga.:

In Dalton, Ga. — known as the “Carpet Capital of the World” — Jan Pourquoi said the entire economy would collapse without immigrant workers. Pourquoi owns a rug company with a warehouse near the city’s railroad tracks and pays $11 an hour for jobs like cutting and sewing door and bathroom mats. He said that he doesn’t question anyone’s paperwork, and that he knows workers will reliably line up at his door looking for openings every morning.

Pourquoi emigrated from Belgium 37 years ago and said he understands his workers’ desire for more job security. But he also said that more needs to be done to stop the flow of immigration at the southern border, and that the government is responsible for opening pathways to citizenship that would make economic security more certain. As for his business, if stricter immigration policies slashed his workforce and he had to raise wages to $15 an hour, he wouldn’t be able to compete against foreign firms with cheaper wholesale prices.

“If I was a poor Mexican, I would be the first one to cross the Rio Grande illegally myself,” he said. “I don’t blame these people. I blame our politicians and our government for letting it happen.”

“Anyone could easily make an argument that the dollar-first ‘Number One for Business!’ state in the country very much encourages illegal immigration into our state,” said King.


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