Mayors of 'sanctuary cities' say they'll fight Trump's plans
SEATTLE (AP) — Democratic mayors of major U.S. cities that have long had cool relationships with federal immigration officials say they will do all they can to protect residents from deportation, despite President-elect Donald Trump's vows to withhold potentially millions of dollars in taxpayer money if they do not cooperate.
New York City's Bill de Blasio, Chicago's Rahm Emanuel and Seattle's Ed Murray are among those in "sanctuary cities" that have tried to soothe immigrant populations worried about Trump's agenda.
"Seattle has always been a welcoming city," Murray said Monday. "The last thing I want is for us to start turning on our neighbors."
In Providence, R.I., Mayor Jorge Elorza, the son of Guatemalan immigrants, said he would continue a longstanding policy of refusing to hold people charged with civil infractions for federal immigration officials. Newark, New Jersey's Ras Baraka echoed that decision, calling Trump's rhetoric on immigration "scary."
Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck told the Los Angeles Times he's committed to a longtime policy of staying out of immigration issues. Mayor Eric Garcetti has backed that up but stopped short of calling LA a sanctuary city because the term is "ill-defined."
During the campaign, Trump gave an immigration speech in which he promised to "end the sanctuary cities" and said those "that who refuse to cooperate with federal authorities will not receive taxpayer dollars." He blamed such policies for "so many needless deaths."
Trump didn't elaborate further on his plans for cracking down on the cities. In a "60 Minutes" interview broadcast Sunday, he said his administration's priority will be deporting criminals and securing the border.