Today, anti-immigrant bill SB 168, sponsored by Republican Senator and Florida GOP Chair Joe Gruters, was approved in the Florida Senate. This bill forces local law enforcement to act as immigration agents and detain and deport members of immigrant communities.
Several amendments looking to protect asylum seekers and victims of crime were filed by Democratic legislators but were voted down by Republican Senators.
Florida Democratic Party Spokesperson Luisana Pérez released the following statement:
“Today’s vote represents a stunning betrayal of Florida’s immigrant communities and will have dire economic consequences in the years to come. SB 168 is an attack on immigrants who have left countries like Venezuela and Cuba and made our state their home. It’s also an attack on the business community. By passing SB 168, Republicans have essentially declared war on the industries — agriculture and tourism — that make up the backbone of our economy. For the rest of their lives, Republicans in the Senate will have to live with the shameful fact that they chose Donald Trump over the lives of people fleeing the persecution of the Maduro regime and put Florida’s economy at risk. This a shameful and dark day in the history of our state.”