AUGUSTA, Maine (NEWS CENTER) -- Governor Paul LePage is standing behind his assertion that he has the power to remove sheriffs who don't comply with orders from the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
LePage spoke to NEWS CENTER at the State House Wednesday, after some sheriffs responded negatively to his claim. He says he would rather come to an understanding with sheriffs in York and Cumberland Counties than fire them. However, LePage argues they must comply with State and Federal laws or "find another job."
"Tell them to read the Constitution," LePage said, in response to the push back he has received.
LePage says this particular issue has nothing to do with an particular immigrant group.Instead, the Governor reiterated that sheriffs are required by state law to obey all orders relating to law enforcement which they receive from the Governor (30-A M.R.S.A. §401(4).
This presents a challenge for county law enforcement officials who say they would need the proper documentation to detain immigrants for immigration agents.