The Biden administration has affirmed its support for cities that shelter illegal immigrants by reversing Trump administration rules that sought to penalize sanctuary cities.
The Justice Department has officially walked away from a Trump-era policy that sought to give federal grants only to cities that would cooperate with federal immigration authorities, according to Reuters.
Although federal law requires police who interact with individuals targeted for deportation to turn them over to immigration authorities, sanctuary cities refuse to do that.
During his tenure in office, former President Donald Trump sought to punish cities that refused to cooperate by employing various tactics to force compliance, including revising grant language so that anyone getting the hundreds of millions of dollars doled out in grants by the Justice Department would have to commit to collaborating with immigration authorities.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has long complained about police in sanctuary cities that fail to honor its detainers, instead releasing serious criminals in the U.S. rather than turn them over to get deported. READ: https://t.co/0pczj2EOkr pic.twitter.com/ieAeuTNYHc
— Judicial Watch ⚖️ (@JudicialWatch) April 21, 2021
In a memo obtained by Reuters, acting head of the Office of Justice Programs Maureen Henneberg said grant recipients will not need to cooperate with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement as a condition of funding.
Existing calls for grant applications that include that requirement are to be taken down and re-posted without the Trump-era language, she wrote.
The Biden administration in March asked the Supreme Court to drop cases it agreed to hear concerning the Trump administration’s efforts to require grant recipients to cooperate with immigration authorities. The court later dismissed those cases.
Earlier this month, the Justice Department dropped efforts to force two Rhode Island cities to cooperate with federal immigration authorities, according to ABC News.
Democrats incentivize illegal immigration with promises of amnesty and sanctuary cities, and a decreased commitment to secure our border. We’re seeing a surge of illegal aliens at our border as a result.
I will always fight to secure our border and support our border agents. pic.twitter.com/KMmlZqkzQu
— Rep Andy Biggs (@RepAndyBiggsAZ) December 19, 2020
As Biden admin reopens floodgate of illegal immigration its more important than evr 4 state/local authorities 2cooperate w immigration enforcement Sen Tillis &I introduced Justice For Victims Of Sanctuary Cities Act 2hold jurisdictions accountable if they flout immigration laws
— ChuckGrassley (@ChuckGrassley) January 29, 2021
The rationale for not collaborating was stated by Chris Magnus, the Tucson, Arizona, police chief who has been picked to run Customs and Border Protection.
“Entangling local policing with additional immigration enforcement responsibilities would seriously compromise our ability to maintain the trust and support of our diverse community,” Magnus told the Arizona Republic in 2017.
“If any of our residents believe that by reporting a crime, seeking assistance, or working with the police to make their neighborhoods safer will cause them to be unconstitutionally detained for an extended time or deported, our community becomes less secure.”
But some say the law is the law. Among them is Republican Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte, who last month signed a law banning sanctuary cities in his state.
Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte (R) signed a bill on Wednesday banning sanctuary cities, which effectively act as safe havens for illegal immigrants, across the state, promising “immigration laws will be enforced in Montana.” https://t.co/VDVdzECSdy
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) April 1, 2021
“We are a nation of laws, and immigration laws will be enforced in Montana,” Gianforte said in a statement, according to the Associated Press.
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