Trump Administration Says It Will Defund Sanctuary Cities

The Trump administration is continuing its tough talk against "sanctuary cities," which shelter people living in the country illegally by refusing to help the federal government enforce immigration laws. Attorney General Jeff Sessions says he is "urging states and local jurisdictions to comply with these federal laws." Sessions said the Justice Department will require compliance with immigration laws in order for the cities to receive grants through the Office of Justice Programs. The Obama administration had a similar policy in place.In Texas, Gov. Greg Abbott has led a similar push to crack down on sanctuary cities, pulling funds from Travis County after its sheriff announced a new policy around compliance with federal immigration authorities. "I applaud today's bold action by Attorney General Sessions that aims to end sanctuary city policies that endanger American lives," Abbott said in a written statement. "After years of the previous administration turning a blind eye to this issue, the federal government is sending a clear and necessary message that the laws of this land are going to be enforced. Texas joins the Trump administration in its commitment to end sanctuary cities, and I look forward to signing legislation that bans these dangerous policies in Texas once and for all."Travis County Sheriff's office, however, has said it complies with the immigration laws Sessions cited as his benchmark for funding. Sheriff Sally Hernandez was not immediately available for comment.State lawmakers are trying to pass a bill that would charge local officials who do not comply with federal immigration enforcement with a crime, cut state funding for the local entities they oversee and assess financial penalties for those cities or counties. The bill was approved by the Senate and has now moved to the lower chamber.   Continue reading...

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