“We have been pushing a piece of legislation in Texas that is going to pass that I will be signing into law that imposes even sterner penalties on counties,” Abbott explained, during an interview with The Steve Malzberg Show.
“It will include things such as further defunding them,” he added. “It will impose fines. And it could impose jail time for these sheriffs to enforce the laws. Oddly enough these sheriffs could wind up behind the very bars they are releasing these criminals from.”
Abbott’s potential new law goes hand-in-hand with a nationwide crackdown by the Trump Administration on sanctuary cities. Trump has previously announced that he would cut federal funding to sanctuary cities, as a way to force them to comply with federal immigration law.
If a piece of legislation is passed in Texas, however, the state government would take these penalties a step further.
Texas has an estimated 1.5 million illegal immigrants—more than any other state except California—and the state currently has two sanctuary counties: Travis County, where left-leaning Austin is located, and Dallas County.