comscore Seattle announces lawsuit over Trump sanctuary cities threat | Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Top News

Seattle announces lawsuit over Trump sanctuary cities threat

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS

    In this Nov. 9, 2016 photo, Seattle Mayor Ed Murray, second left, speaks at a post-election event of elected officials and community leaders at City Hall in Seattle. Murray announced today that Seattle is suing President Donald Trump over his executive order that threatens to withhold federal funds from communities over immigrant issues.

SEATTLE >> Seattle filed a lawsuit today over President Donald Trump’s executive order that threatens to withhold federal funds from communities that refuse to cooperate with efforts to find and deport immigrants in the country illegally.

Mayor Ed Murray said the order issued in January punishing “sanctuary cities” is unconstitutional and creates uncertainty around the city’s budget.

Other governments have sued Trump over the sanctuary issue. San Francisco filed a lawsuit earlier this year, also saying the order was unconstitutional. California’s Santa Clara County and two Massachusetts cities with large Latino populations – Chelsea and Lawrence – have also taken legal action.

The Justice Department said in a statement that “the American people want and deserve a lawful immigration system that keeps us safe and serves our national interest” and that the federal government will enforce relevant laws.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions reiterated this week that the Justice Department would deny grant money to cities that violate a federal law dealing with information-sharing among local police and federal authorities. Sessions said the cities are making their communities unsafe.

Murray challenged that claim.

“Apparently the Trump administration, their war on facts has now become a war on cities,” Murray said during a news conference. “Let me be clear about the facts. We are not breaking any laws and we are prioritizing safety.”

Under the order, Seattle could face at least $10.5 million in cuts to public safety programs, he said.

Trump’s order violates the constitution by trying to make local law enforcement enforce federal immigration law, Murray said.

The order also makes communities less safe by forcing people underground, said City Attorney Pete Holmes.

When people are marginalized and made to fear police, they are less likely to come forward as witnesses to crime, Murray said.

The lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court asks a judge to declare that Seattle is in compliance with the law and that the executive order is unconstitutional under the 10th Amendment and the Spending Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

“This administration has created an atmosphere of anxiety in cities across America and has created chaos in our politics,” Murray said. “It is time for cities to stand up and ask the courts to put an end to the anxiety in our communities and the chaos in our system.”

Click here to see our full coverage of the coronavirus outbreak. Submit your coronavirus news tip.

Be the first to know
Get web push notifications from Star-Advertiser when the next breaking story happens — it's FREE! You just need a supported web browser.
Subscribe for this feature
Comments (0)

By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Terms of Service. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. Report comments if you believe they do not follow our guidelines.

Having trouble with comments? Learn more here.

Scroll Up