Local Leaders React to how Sanctuary Cities Could Lose Funding
US Attorney General Jeff Sessions continues the Trump Administration's tough talk against Sanctuary Cities. He says those cities won't get certain grants if they refuse to enforce immigration laws.
A spokesperson for Mayor Tom Barrett says that Milwaukee is not a sanctuary city. County officials say the same thing. Will the feds take their word for it? Don't be so sure.
As part of President Trump's Executive Order related to illegal immigration, a report from ICE, like this, is supposed to come out weekly. The word Milwaukee Appears under Section III in the table titled jurisdictions that have enacted policies which limit cooperation with ICE.
New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles are also on that list. Self-designated sanctuary cities that US Attorney General Jeff Sessions says are at risk of losing certain federal grants.
"The Department of Justice will also take all lawful steps to claw back any funds awarded to a jurisdiction that willfully violates."
Milwaukee County Supervisor Peggy West says she doubts President Trump's strategy will go anywhere.
"I question, first, the legality of being able to single out these cities and say 'These cities aren't doing what we've asked them to do' when specifically I don't know a time when the federal government has asked us to do something and that hasn't been done."
West's district has the largest Latino population in Milwaukee County. The talk is causing major anxiety among her constituents.
"I think that the Attorney General maybe doesn't have a very good understanding of what a sanctuary city is. Milwaukee is not a sanctuary city. Milwaukee County is not a sanctuary county. What we have in Milwaukee is a situation where the chief of police has said 'That's not my responsibility and I'm not going to do the duties of ICE," she said.
Nationally, the Immigrant Legal Resource Center has already taken a look. They say they don't think this will stand up in court which could be where this idea is headed.