President Trump threatened to “withhold funds” from “sanctuary cities” when he signed an executive order on Jan. 25, 2017. Now, 19 months later, a federal appeals court has deemed the move unconstitutional, upholding a previous district court ruling.
The 2-1 decision Wednesday by the United States 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the federal government cannot withhold federal funding from cities and counties in retaliation for policies that support immigrant and refugee communities.
The ruling was initiated in a lawsuit from the California counties of San Francisco and Santa Clara.
“If they wanted to go after Chicago, if they wanted to go after Denver or Philadelphia, they would not be bound by an injunction,” said David Levine, an expert on federal court procedure at the University of California, Hastings, College of Law. “Those places would have to bring their own lawsuits and whatever happens, happens in those cases.”
Judge Sidney R. Thomas wrote in his decision that only Congress has the power to grant or deny funding.
“Here, the Administration has not even attempted to show that Congress authorized it to withdraw federal grant moneys from jurisdictions that do not agree with the current Administration’s immigration strategies,” Thomas wrote. “Nor could it. In fact, Congress has frequently considered and thus far rejected legislation accomplishing the goals of the Executive Order.”
“Put simply, the president cannot use the threat of defunding as a weapon to force local governments to abandon politics that make their communities safer,” said Santa Clara County, Calif., Counsel James R. Williams.
“We have the law – and justice – on our side,” said Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan. “This ruling is a victory for welcoming cities everywhere and confirms that the administration’s actions violate our Constitution.”
Durkan added, “As we mark this victory for our City, we have no illusions: the administration’s threats to welcoming cities like ours will continue, and these threats will do nothing to make our communities safer. We will not allow our City and our state to be bullied by the President and Attorney General Sessions, who continue to threaten our shared values of inclusion, opportunity, and diversity.”
“I’m pleased that the 9th Circuit recognized that the Trump Administration can’t bully jurisdictions into selling out their immigrant communities,” said Seattle City Attorney Pete Holmes. “Seattle is proud to be a Welcoming City, and we won’t be threatened into abandoning our principles. We are closely evaluating this ruling and considering its implications for our own lawsuit, City of Seattle v. Donald J. Trump.”
Kent Scheidegger, legal director of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation, sided with Trump on the case. Scheidegger said, “This case is headed for rehearing by a larger 11-judge panel, at least, and probably to the Supreme Court.”
San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera praised the ruling.
“San Francisco’s sanctuary policies make our city safer by encouraging anyone who has been a victim or witness to a crime to tell police,” Herrera said. “We are a safer community when people aren’t afraid to call the Fire Department in an emergency.”
Herrera added, “When a president overreaches and tries to assert authority he doesn’t have under the Constitution, there needs to be a check on that power grab. The courts did that today, which is exactly what the framers of the Constitution had in mind.”
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The Dictionary Just Trolled Trump and It’s Perfect
The editors of the Merriam-Webster Dictionary, which is considered among the most popular American English dictionaries, just trolled President Trump.
Many Americans – not to mention Europeans – were shocked to hear the U.S. President Sunday morning label the European Union as one of the greatest foes of America.
“I think the European Union is a foe, what they do to us in trade. Now, you wouldn’t think of the European Union, but they’re a foe,” Trump told a CBS News reporter while in Scotland, when asked to name some of his “greatest foes.”
The Merriam-Webster Twitter account sprung into action, literally reassuring the Western World that there was not some special definition of the word “foe” Trump had discovered.
📈To everyone looking it up: yes, ‘foe’ still means what you think it means. https://t.co/Bq1oqTkXqq
— Merriam-Webster (@MerriamWebster) July 15, 2018
In other words, Merriam-Webster made clear: Trump is again gaslighting the world – and he’s just plain wrong.
Someone else who agrees the EU is not the foe of the United States: the head of the European Union, Donald Tusk, who immediately accused Trump of “spreading fake news.”
Top Republican Strategist: I’m Quitting the GOP – Only Democrats Stand ‘For What Is Right and Decent’
‘The GOP Has Become a Danger to Our Democracy and Values’
Republican strategist Steve Schmidt propelled the campaigns of George W. Bush, Arnold Schwarzenegger, John McCain, and Lamar Alexander. He’s worked for Dick Cheney and Karl Rove, among many other Republicans.
And as of about 2 AM Wednesday morning, he is no longer a Republican.
Schmidt is often seen on cable news, especially MSNBC, where he is a political analyst, spending much of that time denouncing Donald Trump.
But he took to Twitter overnight, hours after an Associated Press report revealed that the Trump administration has been housing hundreds of babies in internment camps. And he dropped a bomb.
In his overnight tweetstorm Schmidt called the Republican Party “corrupt, indecent and immoral,” and “filled with feckless cowards who disgrace and dishonor the legacies of the party’s greatest leaders.”
“This child separation policy is connected to the worst abuses of Humanity in our history. It is connected by the same evil that separated families during slavery and dislocated tribes and broke up Native American families. It is immoral and must be repudiated. Our country is in trouble. Our politics are badly broken.”
Schmidt calls for an “absolute and utter repudiation of Trump and his vile enablers in the 2018 election by electing Democratic majorities. I do not say this as an advocate of a progressive agenda. I say it as someone who retains belief in DEMOCRACY and decency.”
Establishes internment camps for babies. Everyone of these complicit leaders will carry this shame through history. There legacies will be ones of well earned ignominy. They have disgraced their country and brought dishonor to the Party of Lincoln.
— Steve Schmidt (@SteveSchmidtSES) June 20, 2018
This Independent voter will be aligned with the only party left in America that stands for what is right and decent and remains fidelitous to our Republic, objective truth, the rule of law and our Allies. That party is the Democratic Party.
— Steve Schmidt (@SteveSchmidtSES) June 20, 2018
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