Today, the Center for New Community (CNC) released a new report exposing U.S. county sheriffs colluding with well-known anti-immigrant groups to influence immigration policy. Together, sheriffs and these extremist groups disseminate misleading or outright false information and advocate for dangerous mass deportation policies. Among other things, the report shows how these groups have actively recruited sheriffs to implement anti-immigrant policies and practices in their jurisdictions and advocate for anti-immigrant legislation, as evidenced by internal emails gathered from public records requests.
Many county sheriffs allied with nativist groups help implement dangerous anti-immigrant policies that split up families, intimidate survivors of violence, and deport people to their deaths. These are exactly the results that the contemporary anti-immigrant movement has long been seeking: a drastic increase in deportations and attrition through enforcement, with the end goal of maintaining and expanding a white majority in the U.S. Anti-immigrant groups also increasingly uphold these sheriffs as experts to legitimate their nativist agenda nationally.
Sheriffs have much to gain from this relationship: a national profile, funded trips, and filling their county coffers by detaining immigrants. But they also have more to lose. Some sheriffs have actively sought to hide their relationship with anti-immigrant groups from the public, as revealed by internal emails gathered from multiple public records requests.
In conjunction with the report’s release, CNC has also released updated versions of an interactive map and timeline detailing the jurisdictions served by sheriffs featured in the report, and others with ties to the organized anti-immigrant movement, as well as events organized by the movement that have seen participation from sheriffs.