A federal judge in San Francisco has halted another one of Trump’s executive orders – this one would withhold federal funding from sanctuary cities. Sanctuary cities protect undocumented immigrants from deportation for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is because they can help with crime investigations. U.S. District Judge William Orrick issued a temporary halt on the order while the lawsuit makes its way through the court system.
That means that the Trump administration, for all its bluster, can’t withhold federal dollars from these cities right now. The problem is how far the order goes. The two California counties that sued say they stand to lose billions of federal dollars. The Justice Department says that less than $1 million is at stake, and that many cities won’t lose any funding at all.
Trump further muddied the waters in to reassure cities that their funding wasn’t in danger by coming up with a very narrow definition of the term “sanctuary city.” The administration says they’re only looking at one law in the U.S. code, and cities that violate it are the ones that interfere in communication between their police departments and federal officials.
Under that interpretation, supposedly nobody’s really considered a “sanctuary city” at the moment. Even if that’s how Trump is approaching it now, it wouldn’t be surprising to see an order like this snowball into something that harms big cities like Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco and New York City.
As of the time of this posting, Trump had not responded to Judge Orrick’s order. He’s is nearing the end of his first 100 days in office and has nothing to show for it except a Supreme Court justice. He’s had a few of his orders blocked in federal courts, which is frustrating for him and good for everyone else. Too bad, Trump.
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