June 17, 2019

Chicago to Sue Trump Admin Over Sanctuary Cities Funding

06 August 2017, 12:51 | Glen Norman

Chicago to Sue Trump Admin Over Sanctuary Cities Funding

Chicago to Sue Trump Admin Over Sanctuary Cities Funding

Mayor Rahm Emanuel plans to sue the federal government over the Justice Department's threats to cut off funds to Chicago and other sanctuary cities, which help protect undocumented residents, the Tribune reports. The full interview is scheduled to air Sunday evening on WLS radio in Chicago, the Chicago Tribune reported.

The suit will claim that it's illegal for Attorney General Jeff Sessions to withhold federal Byrne grants from cities the Trump administration believes aren't cooperating enough with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials, the mayor said.

Chicago would receive about $3.2 million in Byrne grants, the Tribune reports. The grants amount to roughly three-hundredths of 1 percent of the entire $9.8 billion city budget. The Chicago Tribune called it a "relatively low-stakes gambit with some political upside for Emanuel as he courts support from Latinos".

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Emanuel is one of many local leaders who won't comply with federal immigration rules.

"We find it unlawful and unconstitutional to be, as a city, coerced on a policy", Emanuel said during an as-yet unreleased interview with "Connected to Chicago" on WLS radio-890.

"It is wrong on a values basis; immigrants are part of our community", the mayor said, adding the lawsuit will argue that the Justice Department can not tie grants to a change in policy regarding illegal immigrants, the Chicago Sun Times reported.

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Sessions also wants immigration agents to have access to local jails. A Justice Department report recommends the department improve transparency, training and accountability for bad officers.

Formerly, cities seeking the federal grant money needed only to show they were not preventing local law enforcement from communicating with federal authorities about the immigration status of people they have detained.

Local police are also barred from allowing ICE agents to use their facilities for interviews or investigations and from responding to ICE inquiries or talking to ICE officials about a person's custody status or release date.

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