Democrats in the statehouse joined the sheriffs of Mecklenburg, Wake, and Buncombe Counties today to condemn a measure that would force sheriffs to cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
The measure has the support of many Republican lawmakers, and would require sheriffs to detain inmates for up to four days when asked to do so by ICE. At a news conference today, Democratic state Senator Floyd McKissick said he was especially concerned that under the bill, sheriffs could be removed from office for not complying.
"That’s repugnant, it’s offensive, and it’s something that we should all be deeply concerned about. So on a multitude of levels, this bill should not become law. And I hope that if it is - does become law, that it will be challenged immediately," McKissick said.
Mecklenburg County Sheriff Gary McFadden also spoke at the news conference. He said he believed the bill was intentionally targeting the sheriffs of the state’s seven largest counties, all of whom are African American.