ADMINISTRATION SWITCHES GEARS AFTER BITTER HEALTH CARE DEFEAT …
Still smarting from a major setback on health reform, the administration of Donald Trump pivoted Monday to the issue of immigration.
Specifically, sanctuary cities.
Trump’s attorney general, Jeff Sessions, held a press conference announcing that states and municipalities which fail to follow federal law on immigration will lose access to funding from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).
“I’m urging states and local jurisdictions to comply with federal laws,” Sessions told reporters. “Moreover, the Department of Justice will require that jurisdictions seeking or applying for DOJ grants … certify compliance with 1373 as a condition for receiving those awards.”
Sessions is referencing a specific section of the U.S. Code of Laws (8 U.S. Code § 1373) which prohibits state or municipal governments from enacting laws or policies that withhold “information regarding the immigration or citizenship status” of individuals under their jurisdiction.
“This policy is entirely consistent with the DOJ’s office of justice programs (OJP) guidance that was issued just last summer under the previous administration,” Sessions continued. “This guidance requires jurisdictions to comply and certify compliance with Section 1373 in order to be eligible for OJP grants. It also made clear that failure to remedy violations could result in withholding grants, termination of grants and disbarment or ineligibility for future grants.”
Sessions’ DOJ is taking it a step further, though. Not only does it plan on withholding money from sanctuary cities that fail to comply, the agency “will also take all lawful steps to claw back any fines awarded to a jurisdiction that willfully violates Section 1373.”
We support Sessions’ initiative – if for no other reason than it will save taxpayer money immediately and over the long-term. We also support it because it will result in the deportation of criminal immigrants – something everyone should agree on no matter where they stand on the issue of mass deportations.
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