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Trump Admin. Sues California Over "Sanctuary" Laws

by Countable | Updated on 3.7.18

What’s the story?

  • The Department of Justice has filed a lawsuit against California over three of its "sanctuary state" bills.

  • The laws are meant to protect undocumented immigrants living in the Golden State.

Which laws are being challenged? And why?

As the L.A. Times reported, the Trump administration is claiming "the three laws in question, all passed by the Legislature last year, blatantly obstruct federal immigration law and thus violate the Constitution's supremacy clause, which gives federal law precedence over state enactments."

The three laws-in-question are:

  • Making it a crime for private employers to voluntarily help federal agents find and detain undocumented workers.

  • Prohibiting local law enforcement from sharing information with immigration agents about when detainees are released from custody.

  • Creating a state inspection program for federal immigration detention centers.

What is Jeff Sessions saying?

In a speech at the state capital, Attorney General Jeff Sessions said:

"California absolutely, it appears to me, is using every power it has - powers it doesn't have - to frustrate federal law enforcement. So you can be sure I'm going to use every power I have to stop them."

What is California saying?

Gov. Jerry Brown (D) called Sessions’ trip to Sacramento a political stunt and said the AG misrepresented California’s laws. He also tweeted:

California Attorney General Xavier Becerra echoed the governor’s remarks, tweeting:

### What do you think?

Should the Trump administration go after "sanctuary states"? Are undocumented immigrants a state or federal issue? Hit Take Action and tell your reps, then share your thoughts below.

—Josh Herman

Related Reading

(Photo Credit: KingWu / iStock)

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Written by Countable

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(159)
  • Kimberly
    03/07/2018
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    America should be suing the trump administration for dignity.

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  • Holly
    03/07/2018
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    This administration and the tea party in particular is always espousing the benefits of states rights and they want to make the states govern their own...and that’s what California is doing. The state of California has the biggest economy in the country. Without them paying their federal taxes, red states would be sucking wind. Fuck off Sessions.

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  • John.Nutt
    03/07/2018
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    I live in Los Angeles and we have way too many people here. I live in a nice upperclass neighborhood which used to be safe but there has been a transformation over the past ten years. Now on my street alone there are about two robberies a week. These aren’t even just break ins. We are talking held at gun point while getting out of your car. This is absurd. Sure some of the immigrants are nice people but they definitely are not ALL nice. We need strong boarder security so we can make sure we let in only nice people based off merit when needed. I am done with this open boarders crap. I don’t even recognize my own city anymore. Some areas in LA look like Tijuana now.

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  • Karan
    03/07/2018
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    Whether you agree with Trumps immigration enforcement (which I do), a state cannot simply just shield law breakers. You can’t order officers not to help ICE. You can’t deny ICE access to jails. You’re obstructing immigration law. I’m against abortion but imagine if Red States were Sanctuary States for the unborn where abortion is illegal.

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  • Susan
    03/08/2018
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    I stand with California. I have seen the damage ICE has done to individuals and families without due process.

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  • JTK
    03/07/2018
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    If I lived in California I would be mad as hell at these local elected officials and politicians. Over half of the people arrested by ICE in Oakland last week were VIOLENT criminals. Yes.. VIOLENT criminals!! Harboring these dangerous people from deportation certainly isn’t making California communities safer for any of the poor law abiding citizens there. Hopefully California voters will take their revenge at the polls and send these lunatics into political obscurity where they belong.

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  • Truly
    03/08/2018
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    So much for the small government, states rights republicans. Where is the outrage from their base? Where are the confederate flag waving patriots? Why aren’t they marching in the streets about this blatant act of overreach? Oh, yeah. If it isn’t about guns, abortions, or slaves, they don’t care.

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  • ManfromNebraska
    03/08/2018
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    California needs to be held accountable for it’s total disregard for law and order. Their passage of these foolish laws to thwart immigration officials should be severely punished.

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  • James
    03/07/2018
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    That whole state is failing because of liberals from populated areas along the coast! San Fran and LA! Most of California territory is actually Red! The Central Valley “San Juaqine” Valley the Dessert and mountain regions and along the coast from say From Orange County south to San Diego! Thaw place looks like one big run down City after another! Sorry folks! We Americans especially Working Tax Paying Americans can not tolerate such blatant idiocy out of that state any more! Feds must step in and put the whole state under Martial Law! This is The United States of America where we have a Constitution and as California used to be a great state with a lot of common sense! Something has got to give! We can not tolerate the crap any longer! The President should declare martial law and dismiss the whole state government and many local governments and put it under Military Control! Round up all the illegals and more and establish law and move back to being a society again! They don’t even have water because the whacked out environmentalists and their political reps open up the dams and let all the snow melt from the Sierras run out to sea in order to save a couple of wired species of fish! Goofballs!

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  • NotAmused
    03/07/2018
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    So Sessions has sued California for passing laws to protect undocumented immigrants from being rounded up and deported. At this point I’m so disgusted with the DC crowd that I’m happy to see anyone stand up to them. As a fourth generation Californian, I’m proud of our state and local officials who are taking a stand. Maybe the feds will try to kick us out of the union. I could live with that. Goodness knows, I’m not proud to be an American lately. I’d rather share my state with honest, hard-working immigrants than with Trump’s people.

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  • Mark
    03/07/2018
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    We, the people, have a RIGHT to disagree. Trumpster’s administration wants to take away that RIGHT. That’s not gonna work on me. 🖕

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  • Patty
    03/07/2018
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    Jeff Sessions has no clue what community based policing is all about. He also has a financial interest in locking people up. He needs to be removed from office because it is the only way he will stop his racist agenda.

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  • KYvoter
    03/08/2018
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    If Sessions says California has to follow federal laws then why does KY have no abortion clinics? It’s federal law that abortion is legal but KY has closed all but 1 because our state governor has pushed his personal beliefs to close them. If he as a governor can do this without Washington stepping in to stop him, by all means, the governor of California can do the same. You can’t pick and choose by your own personal beliefs. That’s not what democracy is based on.

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  • Azrael
    03/07/2018
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    Waste of taxpayer funds What is the total amount of money to date being wasted in courts by this administration?

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  • Mary
    03/08/2018
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    I am just shocked at the comments here about “law and order” without appearing to have a full comprehension of the efforts California is doing to keep communities safe. 1. Non citizens are less involved in crimes than American citizens 2. Communities with non citizens still have violence and if ICE gets involved the non citizens will not report crimes 3. Deporting non citizens who have worked and contributing to society only tears families apart and does not make any community safer

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  • Susan
    03/08/2018
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    So the party that vehemently supports State’s rights is now endorsing Federal law over State’s rights? Any chance they could pick a stance and stay with it or is this double talk suppose to provide confidence? I have no issue with Republicans...but I do have a serious issue with this administration that is using the party name to try to drag our nation back from the advancements we have made over many generations! We are better than this! Enough is enough already it is time to move forward together!

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  • Poli.Sci
    03/08/2018
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    I believe in state’s rights and I believe the Federal government should always be limited. However, a state within the United States of America DOES NOT have the authority to trump the Federal government on immigration laws for they are set by the standards of foreign policy. If a state within the United States had the authority to impose a foreign policy, than Vermont would never have been created, Ohio would have controlled the entire Ohio River Valley, Michigan would be fighting a civil war between the UP and LP, California would have taken a large step to impose direct control over the Great Lakes water supply, and etc. No state has the authority to hold illegal immigrants from the authority of the Federal government. Since those illegals come from a foreign country, they are subject to foreign policy regulations and therefore fall under the jurisdiction of the Federal government. Period.

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  • SneakyPete
    03/08/2018
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    THE DACA DILEMMA....... MARCH 9th. It’s March 9th and the Democrats are nowhere to be found on DACA. Gave them 6 months, they just don’t care. Where are they? President Trump and the Republicans are ready to make a deal! Why not the Democrats? The four points of the President’s immigration plan will help dreamers especially in the military. President Trump has been urging lawmakers to reject any DACA proposals that do not embrace the "four pillars" of his immigration platform: * Creating a path to citizenship for Dreamers. * Securing the border. * Eliminating the diversity visa lottery. * Limiting family-based immigration. Sadly we are still seeing the Democratic Leadership, DNC, Senator Schumer, and Rep. Pelosi playing their Political games using the DACA issue and the Dreamers involved, to push their attacks on President Trump’s Agenda. If they were really interested in the resolution of the DACA issue, which was created by Former President Obama in 2012, they had and failed in accomplishing it in the 5 following years of his administrations. President Trump has offered proposals which the Democrats turned down. Trump’s DACA deal which included granting citizenship to 1.8 Million Dreamers in exchange for $25 Billion for the wall, an end to chain migration, and the end of VISA lottery. Face it DREAMers, Democrats aren’t interested in the DACA’s peace of mind, DACA’s are being used in their political game. The DACA issue needs to come to a conclusion. DACA recipients, if they have a job or go to school and are law abiding, need a pathway to citizenship not amnesty. I can’t imagine if I was in that situation and possibly being deported to a country that I don’t know. We need a a wall, more security at the border, end of visa lottery and end of chain migration. The families that broke our laws and brought their kids across border have no right to be here. They can apply for citizenship and get in line l behind those that have already applied. American citizens that break the law have to pay by fines, probation or jail. Families are broken up this way so there is not an argument for the families of DACA given automatic citizenship. Their families broke our laws and should pay the price. 3*9*18.

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  • DrRichSwier
    03/08/2018
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    Good. The two California laws in question attack the First Amendment of the Constitution. One makes it illegal for California employees, including Law enforcement officers, from saying anything to ICE agents. The more onerous one makes it illegal for California citizens to speak to ICE officials about any illegal aliens. The federal government has the Constitutional authority to set immigration policy via the Congress. If Californians want to change the immigration laws then they should petition their members of Congress. Not to obey our laws is how we got into this immigration Messina the first place.

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  • Julie
    03/07/2018
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    Actually local law enforcement is not supposed to help ice! It is appropriate to protect immigrants from a biased administration.

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