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Publius / July 9, 2015

Political Winds Shift Against Obama’s Immigration Policies

The death of Kathryn Steinle has galvanized the political opposition to Barack Obama’s non-enforcement of the nation’s immigration laws. Congressional Republicans are heavily criticizing the Obama administration’s tolerance of sanctuary cities that protect illegal aliens from deportation. “Your department has refused to confront so-called ‘sanctuary’ jurisdictions, endangering the public safety and leading to tragedies such as the recent killings of Kathryn Steinle,” wrote Sen. Jeff Sessions and nine other Republican senators to Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson. In going after these “safe” havens, GOP lawmakers are going after the culture in the upper levels of the Obama administration. In March, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Director Sarah Saldana was asked in congressional testimony if she would support a law requiring local governments to cooperate with ICE. “Thank you, Amen,” was her reply. But she must have received a call from the White House, because the next day ICE released a statement “clarifying” her remarks to say she supported sanctuary cities.

Meanwhile, in the suit against the federal government over Obama’s executive actions on immigration, Judge Andrew Hanen ordered Obama’s bureaucrats to court Aug. 19. He wrote, “Each individual Defendant must attend and be prepared to show why he or she should not be held in contempt of Court. … The Government has conceded that it has directly violated this Court’s Order in its May 7, 2015 Advisory, yet, as of today, two months have passed since the Advisory and it has not remediated its own violative behavior.” Say, here’s a novel idea: What if there were sanctuary cities from the federal government?

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