Judge cites Trump's words in blocking 'sanctuary city' order

Author

27 April, 2017

Trump signed an executive order to do just that, but just last night a judge blocked that order, declaring the decree from Trump unconstitutional.

"We'll see them at the Supreme Court".

Two other judges on the Ninth Circuit earlier this year blocked different versions of Trump's proposed travel ban, which targeted Muslim-majority countries.

"Federal funding that bears no meaningful relationship to immigration enforcement can not be threatened merely because a jurisdiction chooses an immigration enforcement strategy of which the president disapproves", the judge said in the ruling.

A statement issued by White House press secretary Sean Spicer said: "This decision occurred in the same sanctuary city that released a five-time deported illegal immigrant who gunned down innocent Kate Steinle in her father's arms".

The second statement showed the two California governments that sued to block the order - San Francisco and Santa Clara County - had good reason to believe they would be targeted, Orrick said.

Orrick said his ruling does not affect the administration's ability to enforce existing conditions on federal grants.

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In a series of tweets, Trump vowed that the White House was ready to bring the case to the Supreme Court and blasted the USA 9th Circuit Court of Appeals, which was part of legal decisions blocking Trump's travel restrictions on several Muslim-majority countries.

The government hasn't cut off any money yet or declared any communities sanctuary cities.

"The Constitution vests the spending powers in Congress, not the president, so the order can not constitutionally place new conditions on federal funds", he said. Trump and his team have made it clear that they are looking to punish cities that disobey him by removing or re-allocating federal funding away from them. "The idea that an agency can't put in some reasonable restriction on how some of these monies are spent is going to be overturned eventually, and we'll win at the Supreme Court level at some point".

The White House's characterization of Orrick as "unelected", meanwhile, casts in a negative light the system of judicial appointments spelled out in the U.S. Constitution.

Orrick does not sit on the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, but any challenges to his rulings would be heard in that court, NPR reported.

Even if the president could do so, those conditions would have to be clearly related to the funds at issue and not coercive, as the executive order appeared to be, Orrick said. "Federal funding that bears no meaningful relationship to immigration enforcement can not be threatened merely because a jurisdiction chooses an immigration enforcement strategy of which the President disapproves". In the term that ended in 2015, 10 appellate circuits, including the one on which Gorsuch was serving, had reversal rates higher than the 9th Circuit.


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