Anika Omphroy carries passport ‘everywhere’ following signing of ‘sanctuary cities’ law

"It's a sad reality of what we have to face now."

Rep. Anika Omphroy spoke out Tuesday against the recently-signed law banning so-called ‘sanctuary cities’ (SB 168), saying she has begun carrying her passport in the event she is stopped by law enforcement.

“You’re going to end up in a situation where you have to prove you have a right to be here,” the Lauderdale Lakes Democrat told a gathering of the Urban League of Broward County Tuesday evening.

“I have started to travel with my passport everywhere I go. If you have an interesting last name or you look interesting, like I do, then you should probably carry your information with you also.”

Gov. Ron DeSantis signed the bill on June 14 following a contentious debate prior to the bill’s passage. The act requires “state and local governments and law enforcement agencies … to support and cooperate with federal immigration enforcement.”

Democrats have warned the law will unnecessarily target immigrant communities, prompting a potential fear of law enforcement which could cause crimes in those communities to go unreported.

Republicans argued the law was necessary to promote compliance with the country’s immigration laws.

But Omphroy and other Democrats have noted that there aren’t currently any sanctuary cities within the state of Florida.

“We’re creating something that doesn’t exist in order to traumatize people who look like me,” Omphroy argued.

Republicans say the bill only targets criminals already being held by law enforcement. Democrats, such as Omphroy, worry that individuals being stopped for lesser offenses, such as driving without a license, could be targeted.

There’s also the case of Peter Sean Brown, who was nearly deported to Jamaica in April 2018 after turning himself in for a simple parole violation.

The other problem? Brown is a U.S. citizen who was born in Philadelphia. He was held for weeks upon request from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement before the mix-up was finally caught.

The Legislature, including Republicans, have recognized the importance to address racial profiling among police before.

A recently-signed law banning texting while driving included provisions requiring cops to record the ethnicity of drivers. Those records will then be reviewed to ensure the law is not used as a pretext to pull over minorities. That bill earned bipartisan support.

Omphroy argued Tuesday that the sanctuary cities bill had the opposite effect, encouraging attendees to make sure they have their documents ready.

The American Civil Liberties Union even issued a travel advisory for Florida, arguing “Florida residents, citizens and non-citizens, and travelers could face risks of being racially profiled and being detained without probable cause.”

“It’s a sad reality of what we have to face now because of a Legislature that doesn’t understand that diversity is important,” Omphroy said Tuesday night.

“Be aware of the fact that this is our reality now. And I’m not going to sugarcoat it.”

Ryan Nicol

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to [email protected].


  • Jane

    June 25, 2019 at 10:30 pm

    I think it’s a great idea! It’s time for all illegals to carry proof of citizenship!

  • rg

    June 26, 2019 at 2:38 am

    The current migration at our border is costing taxpayers a Kings ransom ($17,000 per day ABC news.) Fleeing persecution? or fleeing for freebies? they sure don’t stay in Mexico when they reach “safety” or ask or offered political asylum in Mexico. Why? because Mexico will give them NOTHING. So they make the long journey to our border, our generous Democrats, and our tax dollars.

    We have Democrat / Socialist / Activists in the Northern Triangle of South America & Mexico; even as you read this instructing the populations the “benefits” & laws of coming to the USA and to make sure you bring your children and use the the magic words…..”credible fear.” Mexico recently arrested two socialist activists who were instrumental in the organizing of prior caravans,

    Then you have a Democrat House saying the crisis is “manufactured” as literally thousands attack our border daily? National Sovereignty is a myth to Democrats. The crisis is manufactured…by the Democrats themselves. Make no mistake about this, Democrats want this to happen and never stop.. They will with hold border security support allowing as many illegal aliens to enter the country as possible overwhelming our BP & ICE before assisting in border security (if ever.).

    To Democrats/Progressives/Socialists (whats the difference?) programs like Temporary Protective Status (TPS) or Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals (DACA) are permanent programs. There is nothing “temporary or deferred” about these programs to Democrats. These programs are designed to admit refugees (usually from the third world) then Democrats fight to keep them here permanently using the charge of racism, religion, guilt, against anyone opposed. Simple formula works great.

  • Sean

    June 26, 2019 at 10:59 am

    She’s not very bright is she? Clueless….and is elected to be a representative of The People. Doesn’t say much for the people she serves I guess.

  • Jim

    June 27, 2019 at 10:26 am

    Smart pol. Sees an opportunity to get her name In lights and curry favor with the radical left in Florida. Totally bogus claim by a finger-lickin-which-way-does-the-wind-blow political hack motivated by self aggrandizement instead of protecting her state and country against a foreign invasion.

Comments are closed.


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