California lawmakers may have eliminated a thorny local political problem for the Woodland City Council this past week when it approved "sanctuary state" legislation that would put new restrictions on interactions between local law enforcement and federal immigration authorities, drawing the ire of federal officials who argued the legislation prioritizes politics over public safety. During a speech, the attorney general said cities and states that don't enforce some federal immigration laws need to "reconsider" their policies.
In a speech at a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office in Northwest Portland, Sessions castigated sanctuary cities as promoters of "lawlessness".
Furthermore, Reese argued if the Trump administration "wants to make controversial and unsafe changes to immigration enforcement" they should work with Congress as opposed to local law enforcement agencies.
"I want to make it very clear that OR is a state that welcomes and wants to encourage our immigrant and refugee communities", the governor said.
"I urge Gov. Brown of California not to sign this law that is in front of him", Sessions said.
Oregon's U.S. Attorney Billy J. Williams, who is among the federal law enforcement officials expected to meet with Sessions, did not return messages on Sunday. Some opposed Sessions' aggressive stance on immigration enforcement and the phase-out of a program to protect young undocumented immigrants brought here as children.
September 5 not only saw Sessions announcing the cutting of the Obama era policy, but also saw about a thousand people demonstrating in support of DACA recipients at Terry Schrunk Plaza here in Portland. But she says she never got a response from Sessions or his staff. "Cooperation has been a key element in informed crime fighting for decades". In a challenge to that threat brought by Chicago, a federal judge ruled last week that the funds could not be withheld without Congress's say-so. Law enforcement agencies in Washington state and California also followed suit. "Think about that: Police may be forced to release pedophiles, rapists, murderers, drug dealers, and arsonists back into the communities where they had no right to be in the first place".
Earlier this month, Sessions announced the Trump administration would phase out DACA, calling it an "unconstitutional exercise of authority by the Executive Branch", while President Donald J. Trump urged Congress to come up with an alternative. It does so in keeping with common sense.
Sessions also has spoken out publicly at least twice about the local case of Sergio Martinez, a "serial immigration violator", who was in and out of Multnomah County's jails six times since December, after the local sheriff and his jail refused to respond to a request by federal immigration officials to be notified of Martinez's release in December.
Brown told reporters she would have appealed to the USA attorney general on behalf of DACA recipients.
"Forcing local law enforcement to act like immigration agents makes all of us less safe", Reese said. "The problem is the policies that tie your hands".
"These policies do far greater damage than many understand", Sessions said.
With the Legislature having made a decision to declare California a "sanctuary state", the council is taken off the hook and need not declare Woodland a "sanctuary city".