Opinion| Lawrence David| Just days after Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor openly complained about her Originalist counterparts strictly interpreting the Constitution a federal appeals court in New York has ruled that the Trump administration can withhold law enforcement grants to sanctuary cities.
New York, Connecticut, New Jersey, Washington, Massachusetts, Virginia and Rhode Island had sued the Trump administration for withholding funds after failing to respond to the Justice Department’s requests for “proof of compliance” with U.S. immigration law in order to have the monies released.
(NY Post) The Trump administration can block federal grant money from New York City and several states that do not give US Immigration & Customs Enforcement access to jails, an appeals court ruled Wednesday…
… “The case implicates several of the most divisive issues confronting our country and, consequently, filling daily news headlines: national immigration policy, the enforcement of immigration laws, the status of illegal aliens in this country, and the ability of States and localities to adopt policies on such matters contrary to, or at odds with, those of the federal government,” wrote Second Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Reena Raggi in the three-judge panel’s decision.
Trump and the Department of Justice officials have repeatedly railed against sanctuary cities, which block federal immigration enforcement from jails and do not alert federal authorities when they release undocumented immigrants.
In January, the New York field director of ICE blamed the city’s sanctuary policy for keeping out of prison the man accused of raping and murdering a 92-year-old Queens woman.
“New York City’s sanctuary policies continue to threaten the safety of all residents of the five boroughs as they repeatedly protect criminal aliens who show little regard for the laws of this nation,” field director Thomas Decker said at the time.
The court ruled that the Attorney General has the authority to deny federal law enforcement grants to local governments that declare themselves sanctuary cities and ignore federal immigration laws in order to prevent illegal aliens from deportation.
Judge Reena Raggi, cited the 2012 Supreme Court case Arizona v. United States, holding that the federal government maintains “broad” and “preeminent” power in deciding immigration policy and States local governments are prohibited from pursuing “policies that undermine federal law.”