TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno, New Jersey’s Republican gubernatorial candidate, on Monday called for a ban on so-called sanctuary cities in the state.
Guadagno said the idea came in response to Democratic candidate Phil Murphy suggesting he would favor turning New Jersey into a sanctuary state.
“Phil Murphy is saying he would rather protect dangerous criminals and murderers,” Guadagno said in a statement.
Her proposal is the latest in a recent line of attacks on Murphy, including one that says Murphy would have the backs of immigrants who commit violent crimes while living in the country illegally.
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The ad cites the 2007 conviction of Jose Carranza, who was found guilty of slaying three college-bound students in Newark. It came after Murphy was asked if he backed a Corzine-era policy requiring police to notify immigration officials during arrests on felony or drunken driving charges.
Murphy had said he still needed to look into the issue but that overall, he wanted to have the backs of immigrants in the United States illegally. He called the crime involving Corranza heinous.
In the first debate with Guadagno, Murphy said that “if need be” New Jersey would become a sanctuary state under his administration. Murphy hasn’t explicitly defined what he means by sanctuary state, but suggested it entails being “welcoming.”
In response to the ads, Murphy said violent crimes should be punished by the law.
Several New Jersey cities, including Newark, designate themselves sanctuaries.
The term generally refers to local officials declining to help federal immigration officers in detention and deportation operations. It also includes not detaining immigrants in the country illegally who might be witnesses to crimes.