Some are calling for Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf to be arrested and charged with obstruction of justice after the Democrat took it upon herself to issue an official public warning to the illegal immigrant community this weekend: Watch out, because ICE is doing a sweep. For her part, Schaaf was unapologetic about her decision to warn residents of the federal operation.
“My statement on Saturday was meant to give all residents time to learn their rights and know their legal options. It was my intention that one mother, or one father, would use the information to help keep their family together,” she said. “I do not regret sharing this information. It is Oakland’s legal right to be a sanctuary city and we have not broken any laws. We believe our community is safer when families stay together.”
Frankly, we’ll see about “Oakland’s legal right to be a sanctuary city” because we do not believe that the final word on that has been spoken by the courts. And even if that’s the case, there is a huge difference between refusing to detain illegal immigrants in jail and actively warning them that ICE is getting ready to perform a series of arrests. Schaff insists that she is not guilty of obstruction because news of the sweep did not come to her through official government channels, but the Justice Department may not ultimately see it that way.
Speaking of the federal government, ICE director Thomas Homan was none too pleased with Schaff’s stunt, and he let her know about it in a statement on Tuesday.
“Sanctuary jurisdictions like San Francisco and Oakland shield dangerous criminal aliens from federal law enforcement at the expense of public safety,” said Homan. “Because these jurisdictions prevent ICE from arresting criminal aliens in the secure confines of a jail, they also force ICE officers to make more arrests out in the community, which poses increased risks for law enforcement and the public.”
He said that Schaaf’s decision put ICE officers in danger was “based on her political agenda.” He said 864 “criminal aliens and public safety threats remain at large, and I have to believe that some of them were able to elude us thanks to the mayor’s irresponsible decision.”