At a White House press briefing on Monday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions put cities on notice: if you want to keep getting federal funds from this administration, you’ll have to renounce your sanctuary policies. Those policies, Sessions said, were putting innocent people in danger on a daily basis.
“According to one recent poll, 80 percent of Americans believe that cities that arrest illegal immigrants for crimes should be required to turn them over to immigration authorities,” said Sessions. “Unfortunately, some states and cities have adopted policies designed to frustrate this enforcement of immigration laws. Such policies cannot continue. They make our nation less safe by putting dangerous criminals back on the streets.”
Sessions said the law and previous rulings by the Obama Justice Department gave him the authority to hold sanctuary cities accountable for their choices.
“Today, I am urging states and local jurisdictions to comply with these federal laws, including 8 U.S.C. Section 1373,” he said. “Moreover, the Department of Justice will require that jurisdictions seeking or applying for Department of Justice grants to certify compliance with 1373 as a condition of receiving those awards.”
Sessions and the Trump administration can expect an enormous amount of legal pushback from any sanctuary cities that have the public funds to wage a war against the federal government. And since this is a matter of great interest to liberal activist groups, even cities that can’t afford to fight back will have money rolling in from billionaire donor networks.
And it’s just so ridiculous, when you think about it. What do these cities have to gain by standing firm in these policies? Their stated reason – that it improves cooperation between police and illegal immigrants – is absurd on its face. No one’s talking about sending the police out to do roundups. Just cooperate. Stop letting bad people back onto the streets when they aren’t even supposed to be in the country! Why is this even controversial?