SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — Bay Area and California city leaders are sounding off on President Donald Trump’s immigration orders.
President Trump on Wednesday signed two executive orders in keeping with campaign promises to boost border security and crack down on immigrants living in the U.S. illegally.City Attorney Herrera
Statement from San Francisco City Attorney Dennis Herrera on the executive order issued today regarding sanctuary cities:
“The threat of cutting off federal grants to coerce cities like San Francisco won’t hold up in court. It violates the law, and it will be challenged.
San Francisco remains a sanctuary city, and we will protect our people and our resources. The courts are on the side of state and local governments here.
This executive order tries to turn cities and states into U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement. That’s against the law. Cities cannot be coerced into becoming the deportation arm of the federal government.
San Francisco is proud to be a sanctuary city. We fully comply with federal law, and we make all of our residents safer.
No president can commandeer the local police and force them to become immigration agents.”
Bay Area Mayors
Today, the mayors of the Bay Area’s three largest cities, Oakland, San Francisco and San Jose, and the City of Berkeley spoke out against President Trump’s executive order on immigration. They reaffirmed their commitment to working together to address the many challenges the region faces from growing income inequality, lack of affordable housing, better education outcomes, job creation and transportation infrastructure improvement.
Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín, San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee, San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo and Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf also vowed to take a regional approach to combat the impacts of any threatened cuts in federal funding that would adversely affect the nearly two and half million residents of diverse backgrounds who reside in their cities.
“The Bay Area stands united against this White House’s morally bankrupt policies that would divide families, turn our nation’s back on refugees in need, and potentially thwart the efforts of nearly one million productive young people who are on a legal path to citizenship. Oaklanders rely on $130 million in federal funding for everything from early education programs like Head Start to getting officers out of their cars and onto our streets at a time when community policing is so desperately needed. We will not allow this president to play politics with our safety and security.” – Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf
“Nothing about the President’s Executive Order will change how San Jose cops police our city. The San Jose Police Department’s longstanding policies relating to immigration enforcement are critical to keeping our community safe. Our police officers must focus their scarce time responding to and investigating violent, predatory and other high-priority crimes – not the enforcement of federal tax laws, federal securities laws, or federal immigration laws. There’s a broad consensus among major city police chiefs that having local officers meddle in federal immigration enforcement undermines public safety, and diminishes community trust. We need to ensure that all residents feel comfortable calling 911, reporting crimes, coming forward as witnesses, and testifying in court to help us keep criminals off the street.” – San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo
“The Bay Area is home to millions of people who have sought refuge and a chance at a better life. As mayors, we stand together in our responsibility to keep our cities safe and healthy and take care of all our residents and families, regardless of status. We will not give in to threats, or political grandstanding. Together, the Bay Area will stay true to our values of inclusiveness, compassion and equality, and united against any and all efforts to divide our residents, our cities, and our country.” – San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee
“Our values of human rights, equity, and inclusion have come under attack by the Trump Administration. In just two days, Trump has pushed a divisive wall, stripped our citizens of civil liberties, and cut funding to cities that have the courage to stand up for all people – whether or not they are legal citizens. We will not be intimidated by threats to cut funding to cities that believe in the fundamental notion that no person is illegal. No amount of federal funding is worth betraying our values.” – Berkeley Mayor Jesse Arreguín
U.S. Senator Kamala Harris
Following the announcement of new executive orders by President Donald Trump, U.S. Senator Kamala D. Harris, a member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Homeland Security & Governmental Affairs and former California Attorney General, released the following statement.
“These executive orders will harm public safety, tear families apart, and jeopardize national security. Directing a deportation force to break up immigrant families contributing to our country is not a show of strength, it damages our communities and erodes local economies. Forcing taxpayers to foot the bill for a wall isn’t a solution, it’s a political gesture. And telling cities they must deny public safety, education and health care services to children and families living within their jurisdiction will not make us more secure, it will mean fewer crimes reported and more families living in fear.
“In its first few days, this new Administration has consistently acted against the interests of those who are voiceless and vulnerable. As a career prosecutor and as a senator representing the state with the highest number of immigrants, I’d urge my colleagues in Congress to uphold America’s tradition of standing up to protect these communities.”
U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein
“The two executive orders signed today by President Trump won’t help fix our immigration system.
“The orders did not address the future of the DACA program, the number one issue at hand. California is home to nearly half of all DACA youth. It’s a successful program that I think the president should leave alone. Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly said DACA youth wouldn’t be a priority and I hope he follows through on that.
“The order concerning the president’s border wall was unclear and there’s little chance Congress will divert billions of dollars to it when there are far more important priorities.
“The solution to immigration won’t be a series of disjointed policy provisions. What we need is comprehensive immigration reform. The Senate passed a bipartisan bill in 2013 and we need to do so again.
Lt. Governor Newsom
“President Trump claims to bring his business acumen to the White House but today’s announcement is not just inhumane and immoral – it is a declaration of national economic devastation.
“Inflicting financial sanctions or mass deportation on the nation’s most economically-dynamic regions would decimate the workforce, strip businesses of their consumer base, and eviscerate the entrepreneurialism that drives our economy.
“It’s also irresponsible and irrational to force cities to participate in deportation crackdowns by threatening to take away their public safety and homeland security dollars – since the inevitable result will be making our cities and our homeland far less safe and secure. Immigrants and local communities should not be compelled to spend precious taxpayer dollars doing the job of the federal government on immigration enforcement.
“Reasonable people share support for local, state and federal cooperation in pursuing dangerous violent criminals, regardless of their immigration status. This was San Francisco’s policy and one I fought to uphold as mayor.
“During that time, however, I also witnessed the federal government’s abuse of those powers, where they swept up law abiding individuals, separated parents from children, and sowed seeds of distrust between communities and local law enforcement. That is why citywide refuge policies are widely supported by law enforcement and the public at large.
“If President Trump and Republicans in Washington are serious about the economy, and law and order, they would be wise to abandon this cynical nativism.”
Attorney General Xavier Becerra
“It is important to put these White House executive actions in context.
“Executive orders do not change existing law. Executive orders cannot contradict existing law. And Executive orders can be challenged for violating constitutional and legal standards in their enforcement.
“The California Department of Justice (DOJ) is prepared to protect the public safety and general welfare of all Californians as well as their privacy and property rights. These are rights and protections which have survived numerous legal challenges over time. And they are grounded on our federal and state constitutions not on an executive pronouncement.
“The California DOJ will protect the rights of all of its people from unwarranted intrusion from any source, including the federal government. In California, we want to foster trust between law enforcement authorities and the communities they are obliged to protect. That’s why California enacted the TRUST and TRUTH acts to guide our men and women in uniform on the proper execution of their public safety duties.
“California is prepared to work with our federal government to enhance the safety and well-being of all our people. We will work with our sister states to achieve mutual goals of respect and cooperation with the federal government. And we will remain ready to advance and defend California’s policies wherever and whenever necessary.”
Assemblymember David Chiu
Assemblymember David Chiu (D-San Francisco) today issued the following statement after Donald Trump issued several executive orders related to immigration:
“Trump is operating as if his divisive and hateful campaign promises have legal merit. They do not, and we will not back down. San Francisco will remain a Sanctuary City and California will remain a refuge for everyone regardless of immigration status.
I will continue to support policies that protect our community. Among other measures, I am proudly co-authoring Senate President Pro Tem Kevin De León’s SB 54 to make sure ICE does not deport our friends and families based on minor offenses that disproportionally impact brown and black communities.”
Supervisor Jeff Sheehy
Supervisor Sheehy’s Statement on President Trump’s Executive Order blocking Federal funds to sanctuary cities:
“San Francisco is a city of immigrants—and will always be a sanctuary for those seeking love and acceptance. Trump’s proposed budget cuts would hurt the most vulnerable among us and must be stopped. We’re going to fight these actions with all our might.”
Congresswoman Barbara Lee
Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee released the following statement on President Trump’s executive order targeting immigrant communities:
“By issuing executive orders that direct federal funds to build a wall on our border and restrict federal resources to sanctuary cities, President Trump has begun to implement his anti-immigrant attack against vulnerable populations.
“The president’s executive orders are rooted in an un-American hostility toward immigrant communities. This nation is, has been, and always will be a nation of immigrants. Directing federal funds to build a wall between the United States and Mexico is a betrayal of our fundamental values. Instead of building walls to keep immigrant families out, we should be focused on passing comprehensive immigration reform that would keep families together.
“Today’s directives also take the unprecedented step of targeting sanctuary cities. These cruel, counterproductive policies are designed to terrorize immigrant communities and bully local jurisdictions. My district is home to four proud sanctuary cities: Berkeley, Oakland, Alameda and Emeryville. I refuse to allow the Trump administration to intimidate my constituents. As a member of the Appropriations Committee I will fight tooth and nail to prevent funding for these misguided, anti-immigrant policies.
“While President Trump continues his attack on immigrants, I vow to stand up for our communities with a clear message: this is not who we are. We will organize and prevent these reckless polices from tearing families apart. Together, we will resist.”
U.S. Representative Zoe Lofgren
“I am undertaking a thorough analysis of President Trump’s executive orders on immigration today, and will be issuing a more comprehensive review soon.
“In the meantime, it appears President Trump is reinstituting a number of programs that failed and thusly were terminated including Secure Communities and Section 287(g). The programs were ineffective. Further, some local governments faced monetary judgments against them when individuals’ rights were violated pursuant to the operation of these programs.
“President Trump had previously said he would target dangerous criminals for deportation, a policy established by President Obama. These orders appear to depart from his prior statements.
“It appears he has plans for a massive expansion of interior enforcement, tripling the number of ICE agents and targeting all individuals without legal status. We can only assume President Trump intends to engage in widespread raids in communities across America. Raids in past years terrorized law abiding communities, disrupted family life and harmed the economy.
“These executive orders seem to be based on the flawed premise that immigrants and refugees are criminals and undesirable elements who harm our country. Trump’s actions will harm America and will lead to more family separations, disruption at our southern border and will make it more difficult for us to attract the best and brightest talent from around the world.
“I will stand with my Democratic colleagues to speak the truth and to fight to protect the innocent families, women and children President Trump has targeted today.”
San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi
San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi released the following statement today in response to President Donald Trump’s announcement to increase deportations and cut federal funding to sanctuary cities.
“Today the Trump Administration made it clear that San Francisco can no longer ‘wait and see’ when it comes to defending its residents from deportation. San Francisco’s public defenders stand ready and willing to fight for the city’s families in immigration detention. We are used to taking on the toughest cases, navigating the complicated intersection of criminal and immigration law, and helping people facing indefinite incarceration.
We stand in solidarity with millions of people throughout the country in opposition to Trump’s xenophobic attacks on immigrants and believe no family should be torn apart because they cannot afford a private attorney. We call on the City of San Francisco and Mayor Lee to ensure detained immigrants are appointed public defenders to fight for them.”
MORE FROM SAN FRANCISCO MAYOR ED LEE:
President Donald Trump Wednesday signed an executive order denying federal grant funds to cities such as San Francisco with “sanctuary city” policies limiting local law enforcement’s cooperation with federal
San Francisco receives around $1 billion in funding from the federal government across all categories but Mayor Ed Lee Wednesday said the city is still working to determine exactly which funds will be affected by the order. He said Department of Homeland Security grant funds total somewhere around $10 million.
“Our city is still a sanctuary city and we are going to remain a sanctuary city,” Lee said.
The mayor said he believed San Francisco’s sanctuary city policy makes the city safe. The policy is intended to increase trust and cooperation between local law enforcement and immigrant communities, as well as make it possible for immigrants to access services such as education and health care.
The policy has been the subject of controversy, most recently following the July 1, 2015, shooting of Kate Steinle, a 32-year-old Pleasanton native who was killed while walking on Pier 14.
Juan Francisco Lopez-Sanchez, a Mexican citizen with a history of drug convictions and deportations, was arrested an hour later and charged with killing her with a gun that had been stolen from the car of a U.S. Bureau of Land Management ranger.
Steinle’s family sued San Francisco because the sheriff’s department had released Lopez-Sanchez from jail a short time before the shooting without notifying immigration authorities, as dictated by city policy.
However, a federal judge threw out the family’s case against the city earlier this month, saying there was no law requiring the city to disclose his release date.
The Board of Supervisors voted in May to uphold and revise the sanctuary city policy to clarify that law enforcement would only notify immigration authorities of an inmate’s release in limited circumstances involving serious felonies.