The Senate voted 24-5 today to pass Sen. Gary Stubblefield SB 411 to prohibit “municipal sanctuary policies.” It’s a can of worms.

Sen. Will Bond noted that the legislation sets up investigatory process in which the attorney general would probe in response to a complaint whether a city or county was complying with federal law on dealing with immigrants. But violation could include a practice even “informally” adopted. As a matter of practice, Little Rock police for example don’t check for immigration status, thinking it discourages cooperation in crime solving. Is that a violation of Stubblefield’s bill?

Bond noted that, in addition to usurping local control, the bill exempts any materials in an investigation from the Freedom of Information Act. And it gives over to the attorney general to deny payment of state grants to cities and counties that she deems out of compliance. He questioned the constitutionality of the delegation of the legislature’s appropriation authority.

On to the House. Stubblefield talked of crimes and accidents caused by people in the country illegally. Yes, and many caused by people here legally.

To those who suggested this usurped local control, Stubblefield said it’s within the control of cities and counties to obey federal law.