California to sue Trump administration over sanctuary city threat

Barsaba Taglieri
Agosto 14, 2017

California will sue the Trump administration over a threat to withhold grant funds from sanctuary cities, a spokesperson for the California's attorney general office told Reuters on Monday. The city of Chicago filed a similar lawsuit over the new grant conditions one week ago.

Herrra called those conditions "unauthorized and unlawful", and said the Trump administration was engaging in a "backdoor attempt" to get states and cities to enforce federal law.

The move follows a U.S. Department of Justice directive issued by Attorney General Jeff Sessions in July that seeks to require cities and counties that declare themselves sanctuaries for undocumented immigrants to cooperate with federal immigration authorities in order to receive federal law enforcement grants. "By placing unconstitutional immigration enforcement conditions on public safety grants, the Trump Administration is threatening to harm a range of law enforcement initiatives across California". This is pure intimidation meant to force our law enforcement into changing the policies and practices that they have determined promote public safety.

"It's a low blow to our men and women who wear the badge, for the federal government to threaten their crime fighting resources in order to force them to do the work of the federal government when it comes to immigration enforcement", Becerra said.

Congress has appropriated $28.3 million in law enforcement funding grants to California through the Edward Byrnes Memorial Justice Assistance Grant program. Every state is entitled by law to a share of these formula JAG funds.

The California Legislature is considering a measure nicknamed the "sanctuary state bill" that would limit state and local police from cooperating with federal immigration agents.

"It's an ominous threat", Becerra said, calling it "not only reckless but illegal".

"So-called sanctuary policies make all of us less safe because they intentionally undermine our laws and protect illegal aliens who have committed crimes", Sessions said at the time "These policies also encourage illegal immigration and even human trafficking by perpetuating the lie that in certain cities, illegal aliens can live outside the law".

Lawsuits against the administration's policy are piling up.

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