Wednesday, 18 October, 2017

Chicago to Sue US Over Funding Threats Against 'Sanctuary Cities'

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel speaks during a press conference where sanctuary cities which don't arrest or detain immigrants living in the U.S. illegally and Chicago violence two issues raised by President Donald California sanctuary state bill needs changes, Jerry Brown says
Debra Rodriguez | 08 August, 2017, 01:54

Mayor Rahm Emanuel of Chicago announced on Sunday that the city will be suing the Trump administration over threats to withhold public safety grant money from "sanctuary cities".

The 46-page lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago, a day after Emanuel announced the litigation and said the city won't "be blackmailed" into changing its values as a welcoming city. The mayor also argued that the Trump administration's actions are "unlawful and unconstitutional".

But a new Justice Department policy requires any recipient to allow immigration authorities unlimited access to local jails.as well as 48 hours' notice before releasing anyone wanted for immigration violations. a requirement Chicago Counsel Ed Siskel says violates the constitution.

"These new conditions - which would give federal officials the power to enter city facilities and interrogate arrestees at will and would force the City to detain individuals longer than justified by probable cause, exclusively to permit federal officials to investigate their immigration status - are unauthorized and unconstitutional", the complaint read.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel told reporters on Sunday that the city would file the suit, report the Chicago Tribune, the Washington Post and the Chicago Sun-Times. Administration officials say the policies undermine efforts to root out and deport violent criminals who are in the country illegally, while the cities say the close cooperation federal authorities demand undermines public trust and forces them to violate the rights of their residents. Chicago officials are waiting to hear whether Mr. Sessions plans to enforce a Justice Department investigation of the Chicago police, completed in the final days of Barack Obama's presidency, that found a pattern of discriminatory practices. Since the grant only accounts for a small percentage of the city's budget, he can afford to lose the funding while positioning himself as a "high-profile bulwark" against the Trump administration - which could help him court more Hispanic voters. The Justice Department said in a statement that more Chicagoans were murdered previous year than residents of Los Angeles and NY combined.

In response to Emanuel's announcement, the Justice Department called the Chicago lawsuit "tragic". The money would mostly be used to buy police vehicles. "He's brought discipline, no doubt, to that effort", Emanuel said. Chicago became the first city to sue the Justice Department over this issue. "Once that individual is found to no longer be a suspect or has paid his or her bond you can not have the legal authority to continue to detain them", said Mary Meg McCarty with the National Immigrant Justice Center.

"I think it is a smart lawsuit", said Mr. Villegas, whose ward was the site of a shooting this year involving an Immigration and Customs Enforcement agent that raised tensions among residents.

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