Ban sanctuary cities in Ohio

Assume for a moment that the Ohio Legislature approved, and Gov. John Kasich signed into law, a requirement that no arm of local or state government is to assist the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in any way. No help with emissions records, no enforcement of state rules linked to federal regulations, no anything.

As embraced as that would be by many in our area, especially those behind the energy and natural gas movements which sprouted up in recent years, it would be wrong. And, under settled constitutional principle, illegal for our state to do that. We could count on the long arm of the federal government reaching out and slapping us down.

So why isn’t Washington penalizing “sanctuary cities” and counties?

There are scores of them in 35 states. California leads, with 80 cities and counties formally refusing to allow local police to aid federal immigration authorities in any way.

A few of the “sanctuary cities” are in Ohio. Cleveland, Cincinnati and Columbus are among them.

But that may change. State legislators are looking into the issue. Republicans propose outlawing “sanctuary cities” in Ohio.

Democrats, on the other hand, want the entire state to be a sanctuary for illegal immigrants.

President Donald Trump has vowed to penalize “sanctuary cities,” perhaps by withholding some federal assistance that goes to them. He should do just that.

Ohio lawmakers should not wait for that to happen. They should enact the proposal outlawing the practice in Ohio.

Gov. Kasich, no friend of Trump’s, agrees the sanctuary city movement is wrong. “When people break the law, they need to be held accountable for something like coming here illegally,” he said.