NC Senate vote means showdown nears on immigration bill

Photo: US Air Force

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) The Republican-controlled General Assembly is heading for a showdown with Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper as legislators near final passage of a bill that would strong-arm several North Carolina sheriffs refusing to cooperate with federal immigration agents.

The Senate approved a measure 25-18 on Monday requiring all sheriffs to recognize requests from Immigration and Customs Enforcement to hold inmates ICE believes are in the country unlawfully. Sheriffs also would have to check the immigration status of everyone in their jails.

A version already passed the House, and the Senate's changes are also backed by the House bill's sponsors.

Earlier Monday, Cooper called the bill unconstitutional and signaled a likely veto if it reaches his desk.

The bill was prompted by recently elected Democratic sheriffs who won't comply with ICE detainers.