Judge permanently blocks Trump sanctuary cities order

In this April 14, 2017, file photo, protesters hold up signs outside a courthouse where a federal judge was to hear arguments in the first lawsuit challenging President Donald Trump’s executive order to withhold funding from communities that limit cooperation with immigration authorities in San Francisco. (AP)
Updated 21 November 2017
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Judge permanently blocks Trump sanctuary cities order

SAN FRANCISCO: A federal judge on Monday permanently blocked President Donald Trump’s executive order to cut funding from cities that limit cooperation with US immigration authorities.
US District Court Judge William Orrick rejected the administration’s argument that the executive order applies only to a relatively small pot of money and said Trump cannot set new conditions on spending approved by Congress.
The judge had previously made the same arguments in a ruling that put a temporary hold on the executive order targeting so-called sanctuary cities. The Trump administration has appealed that decision to the 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals.
“The District Court exceeded its authority today when it barred the President from instructing his cabinet members to enforce existing law,” Department of Justice spokesman Devin O’Malley said in a statement late Monday. “The Justice Department will vindicate the President’s lawful authority to direct the executive branch.”
Orrick’s ruling came in lawsuits brought by two California counties, San Francisco and Santa Clara.
San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera said the ruling was “a victory for the American people and the rule of law.”
“President Trump might be able to tweet whatever comes to mind, but he can’t grant himself new authority because he feels like it,” he said in a statement.
A lawyer for the DOJ argued during a hearing before Orrick in April that the executive order applied to only a few grants that would affect less than $1 million for Santa Clara County and possibly no money for San Francisco.
But the judge disagreed, saying in his rulings that the order was written broadly to “reach all federal grants” and potentially jeopardized hundreds of millions of dollars in funding to San Francisco and Santa Clara.
He cited comments by the president and Attorney General Jeff Sessions as evidence that the order was intended to target a wide array of federal funding. And he said the president himself had called it a “weapon” to use against recalcitrant cities.
The Trump administration separately has also moved to withhold one particular law enforcement grant from sanctuary cities, prompting a new round of lawsuits that are pending.


Trump says he’s reducing Central American aid over migrants

Updated 22 October 2018
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Trump says he’s reducing Central American aid over migrants

  • Trump tweets: “Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador were not able to do the job of stopping people from coming illegally to the US"
  • The three countries received a combined more than $500 million in funding from the US

WASHINGTON: President Donald Trump says the US will begin “cutting off, or substantially reducing” aid to three Central American nations over a migrant caravan heading to the US southern border.
Trump tweets: “Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador were not able to do the job of stopping people from leaving their country and coming illegally to the US“
The three countries received a combined more than $500 million in funding from the US in fiscal year 2017.
Trump has raised alarm over a group of thousands of migrants traveling through Mexico to the US, saying, “Sadly, it looks like Mexico’s Police and Military are unable to stop the Caravan.”
He adds: “I have alerted Border Patrol and Military that this is a National Emergy.” White House officials could not immediately provide details.