Appearing on Fox News Thursday night, Daily Wire Editor-in-Chief Ben Shapiro condemned the verdict in the case of the illegal immigrant who killed Kate Steinle, and pointed out three salient aspects of the case: that the killer of Steinle, Jose Inez Garcia Zarate, should at the very least have been convicted of involuntary manslaughter, that the issue of sanctuary cities was one reason why President Trump won the 2016 election, and that the issue of illegal immigrants having the capacity to commit crimes and then reenter the United States at will was a compelling reason why President Trump needs to build a wall on the southern border of the United States.
Host Shannon Bream welcomed Shapiro and Adrienne Elrod, director of strategic communications for Hillary Clinton, then began by reading a statement from the deputy director of ICE, in which he said:
It is unconscionable that politicians across this country continue to endanger the lives of Americans with sanctuary policies while ignoring the harm inflicted on their constituents. Following the conclusion of this case, ICE will work to take custody of Mr. Garcia Zarate and ultimately remove him from the country.
Bream pointed out to Elrod that Garcia Zarate had come back five times, then asked how this time would be any different. Elrod commented that the system at the local, state and federal level broke down, adding, “I can’t wrap my head around this verdict.” She stated that local law enforcement in sanctuary cities “will say that having an ongoing dialogue with the immigrant community in their cities is what actually makes it safer.” She asserted, “You do see crimes that are lower in some sanctuary cities among the immigrant community compared to some cities where they feel they cannot communicate with law enforcement.”
Bream asked, “Ben, what do you make of that argument?”
I live in Los Angeles, and I can tell you that the idea that making sure that illegal immigrants continue to be released back on to the streets rather than being given over to the feds, that is not going to lower the crime rate. The lack of trust between the immigrant community and the law enforcement community, that needs to be overcome, but that can’t be overcome by simply saying that illegal immigrants should be released back into the community rather than being handed over to the feds.
In this particular case, this guy was a repeat criminal many times. If he’d been a citizen of the United States, here in California we have a Three Strikes Law. If you are convicted three times in felony cases, you end up in jail for a very, very long time: for life. In this particular case, this guy was convicted of a bunch of different crimes, he was deported over and over and over again, he was set free by sanctuary cities that refused to coordinate with federal law enforcement. He was out; he picked up a gun; he stole a gun, presumably; and then he shot Kate Steinle. Whether he did it, whether he meant to shoot her or whether he meant to discharge the firearm is of no consequence. When you pick up that gun, and you know that it has the possibility of firing, and it fires, then this is, at the very best, involuntary manslaughter.
Bream responded, “But not according to this jury; they said not guilty on that count as well.” She asked Elrod if she understood how powerful an impact Steinle’s death had on the political debate in 2016, and how powerfully Donald Trump tapped into the public’s anger regarding the issue of sanctuary cities.
Elrod answered that she understood what Trump tapped into, but said it was “an absolute shame that he used this case time and time again as a political football when the family of Kate has gone through so much tragedy and so much heartache."
Running out of time, Bream asked Shapiro for his response. He stated bluntly:
The basic notion that an illegal immigrant can commit crimes in this country and then reenter the country at will is why President Trump won and it’s why President Trump ought to push for the construction of that barrier and ought to make sure the American people are safe from predators like this one.