Biden Admin Threatens Oklahoma Over Law Criminalizing Illegal Immigration

The Department of Justice is threatening a lawsuit against the state of Oklahoma over a law that seeks to criminalize illegal immigration in the state.

The bill gives law enforcement agents the authority to arrest illegal immigrants who are suspected of committing “impermissible occupation” in the state. First time convictions carry a different penalty from second convictions. However, the illegal immigrant involved in both cases would be required to leave Oklahoma within 72 hours of being released from custody.

Oklahoma Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt signed the bill into law recently but the Biden admin DOJ is claiming that the law is unconstitutional.

In a letter DOJ Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney Brian Boynton wrote to Stitt, he wrote, “The United States intends to file suit to enjoin the enforcement of HB 4156 unless Oklahoma agrees to refrain from enforcing the law. The United States is committed to the processing of noncitizens consistent with the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). HB 4156 is contrary to that goal.”

Oklahoma Attorney General Gentner Drummond shot back at the DOJ in a statement defending Oklahoma’s “sovereign right to defend its people” and its “legal obligation to defend’ and protect its people.

Drummond also argued that the law is necessary given that “the Biden administration has abdicated control of the border.”

Oklahoma is not the only one who has received the threat of a lawsuit from Biden’s DOJ, as it is only one of several states that have passed legislation to tackle the border crisis caused by the Biden admin.

Earlier this month, the DOJ warned Iowa that it will sue the state over a recently passed law that would bump up illegal reentry into the state and make it an aggravated misdemeanor so that the state can arrest illegal immigrants.

In a letter Boynton wrote to Iowa Gov. Kim Reynolds and Iowa Attorney General Brenna Bird, he argued that the law violates the United States Constitution, as it “effectively creates a separate state immigration scheme,” hence intruding into “a field that is occupied by the federal government and is preempted.”