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Newt Gingrich targets 'sancturary' cities for illegal immigrants

In a campaign speech in South Carolina, a key primary state, Newt Gingrich spoke against 'sanctuary' cities for illegal immigrants. But Newt Gingrich also called for a guest worker program.

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Republican presidential candidate former House Speaker Newt Gingrich speaks to supporters Monday, Nov. 28, 2011, in Charleston, S.C.

(AP Photo/Alice Keeney)

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Republican presidential hopeful Newt Gingrich  told a South Carolina town hall on Monday that as president he would block federal funds to any city that "declared itself a sanctuary" for illegal immigrants.

Gingrich, fresh from a key endorsement from an influential New Hampshire newspaper, is on a three-day swing through South Carolina, an early primary state that his campaign has dubbed his "southern firewall."

"No American president has the right to side with foreigners," Gingrich told a crowd of hundreds at the College of Charleston, after reciting a list of 16 countries that he said had filed friend of the court briefs in a Justice Department lawsuit against South Carolina's new immigration law.

The law, which goes into effect on Jan. 1 barring an injunction from a federal court, requires police officers to check the immigration status of anyone they stop or detain for another reason and makes it a felony to knowingly transport or harbor undocumented immigrants.

"In three years and eight months, we defeated fascist Italy, Nazi Germany and imperial Japan. Today, we can't build a (border) fence," Gingrich said. "I would propose cutting off all federal funds to any city that declares itself a sanctuary city."

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