Red State AG pushes back against Biden immigration lawsuit: ‘We’re happy to fight you’

Oklahoma’s attorney general is fighting a lawsuit filed by the Biden administration over its anti-illegal immigration law, saying his state is confident in the bill’s legality — and is happy to fight the administration on this issue.

“I would say to the Biden administration, take your fight to Oklahoma. We’re happy to fight you,” Attorney General Gentner Drummond told Fox News Digital in an interview Tuesday.

The Justice Department had written to Drummond and Gov. Kevin Stitt last week, threatening to sue over HB 4156 — which makes it a state crime to be in the state illegally and gives law enforcement local order the possibility of arresting illegal immigrants and demanding them. leave the state within 72 hours of conviction or release. On Tuesday, hours after Drummond spoke to Fox News Digital, the DOJ announced it had filed a lawsuit.

BIDEN’S DOJ THREATENES ANOTHER STATE GOP WITH LAWSUIT FOR ANTI-ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION EFFORTS

Attorney General Merrick Garland at the Department of Justice on May 2, 2023 in Washington, DC (Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

The law was signed by Stitt this month and is scheduled to take effect July 1. It is similar to laws passed and enacted in Iowa and Texas. Both of these laws were subsequently the subject of DOJ lawsuits, which assert that they infringe on federal authority over immigration law and enforcement. The Texas law is currently on hold amid an ongoing lawsuit.

“We initiated this action to ensure that Oklahoma adheres to the Constitution and the framework passed by Congress to regulate immigration,” Principal Assistant Attorney General Brian Boynton said in a statement.

ANOTHER RED STATE TAKES ANOTHER STEP TOWARD PASSING TEXAS-LIKE ANTI-ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION BILL

He said in his letter to Oklahoma last week that Congress had implemented a “comprehensive plan governing entry of non-citizens and re-entry into the United States, including penalties for illegal entry and re-entry.

“HB 4156, however, seeks to create a separate state-level immigration program by imposing criminal penalties on states for violating federal prohibitions on illegal entry and re-entry. HB 4156 therefore intrudes in federally occupied land and is preempted,” he said. said.

“The United States intends to bring action to enjoin the enforcement of HB 4156 unless Oklahoma agrees refrain from applying the law. The United States is committed to treating noncitizens in accordance with the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). HB 4156 is contrary to that goal,” he added, setting a May 20 deadline to respond.

However, Drummond called this a “red herring.”

Religious-public-school-Oklahoma

Oklahoma Attorney General Gentner Drummond stands during the national anthem during inauguration ceremonies January 9, 2023 in Oklahoma City. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, file)

“The open border coalition groans and gnashes its teeth when states exercise sovereignty,” Drummond said. “And in this case, Oklahoma has truly been overrun by Chinese nationals and Mexican cartels who, in concert or separate and apart from each other, are engaged in illegal activities – primarily the black market in marijuana and, at the same time, the distribution of fentanyl, sex trafficking, human trafficking.

“And these organized crime affiliates are being favored through illegal aliens engaged in illegal activities. And I need a cause of action to capture, detain, prosecute and imprison,” he said .

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Drummond also said he expected a lawsuit to follow once the bill itself is signed into law.

“I fully expected that the Biden administration would try to intervene and distract the public from its failures,” he said.

He also expressed great confidence in his state’s case, noting that unlike other bills, Oklahoma’s mandates the removal of illegal immigrants from the state, not their expulsion from the country.

“The federal government is the agency that deports aliens. States traditionally don’t do that, and Oklahoma doesn’t try to do that,” he continued.

He said that while there is a liberal faction in Oklahoma that opposes the bill, it has broad support from Republicans in state government. However, he emphasized that his support for this bill is based on an independent determination that it is legal and beneficial to the state.

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“I can promise you one thing. This attorney general stands behind home plate. I don’t throw the ball. Don’t swing at the ball, don’t catch it. I call the ball and I call the strike. And in this case, I have independently determined that the State of Oklahoma needs a mechanism to reduce organized crime in Oklahoma by and through its illegal labor force, and this law allows it,” he said.



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