In a 49-page decision on April 25, U.S. District Judge William Orrick III issued a preliminary injunction against enforcement of President Donald Trump’s executive order penalizing sanctuary jurisdictions – section 9(a) of the executive order. The preliminary injunction applies not only in San Francisco, but nationwide. The injunction “does not impact the Government’s ability to use lawful means to enforce existing conditions of federal grants or 8 U.S.C. 1373, nor does it restrict the Secretary from developing regulations or preparing guidance on designating a jurisdiction as a ‘sanctuary jurisdiction.’”
Judge Orrick said it was clear that the executive order meant to withhold federal funds for more than law enforcement:
“The rest of the Order is broader still, addressing all federal funding. And if there was doubt about the scope of the Order, the President and Attorney General have erased it with their public comments. The President has called it ‘a weapon’ to use against jurisdictions that disagree with his preferred policies of immigration enforcement, and his press secretary has reiterated that the President intends to ensure that ‘counties and other institutions that remain sanctuary cites don’t get federal government funding in compliance with the executive order.’”
White House chief of staff Reince Priebus called the ruling “the 9th Circuit going bananas” and said the administration will appeal.
- U.S. judge blocks Trump order to restrict funding for ‘sanctuary cities’ (Reuters, 4/25/17)
- Judge Blocks Trump Effort to Withhold Money From Sanctuary Cities (New York Times, 4/25/17)
- Federal Court In San Francisco Blocks Trump’s Threat Against Sanctuary Cities (NPR, 4/25/17)
A Federal Judge Just Blocked Trump’s Executive Order Targeting Sanctuary Cities (Mother Jones, 4/25/17)
Trump backs down on border wall
Faced with this week’s deadline for avoiding a government shutdown, Trump backed down on his demand for immediate funding for his border wall, saying he can wait until September. While that may resolve this week’s budget crisis, objections to the border wall keep on coming – the latest is fear that the wall will cause serious flooding – and reports that the fences now in place have done just that.
- Trump’s border wall blink (The Atlantic, 4/25/17)
- Trump open to getting border wall money in fall (The Hill, 4/24/17)
- White House ‘confident’ of averting shutdown as Trump shows flexibility on wall (Washington Post, 4/24/17)
Mexico Worries That a New Border Wall Will Worsen Flooding (NPR, 4/25/17)
“Mexican engineers believe construction of the border barrier may violate a 47-year-old treaty governing the shared waters of the Rio Grande. If Mexico protests, the fate of the wall could end up in an international court….
“Mexico is watching with growing alarm as Homeland Security moves ahead with its plan to dramatically extend a border barrier that already has caused serious flooding.”
And in other news
Immigrant crime victims in Minnesota find wide disparities in special visa program (Star Tribune, 4/25/17) Crime victims who help police investigate the crime may be eligible for a permanent resident visa called a U visa. In Minneapolis, most crime victims who apply get police approval – the first step on the way to the U visa. St. Paul’s approval rate has been low – about 10 percent – but that may be changing.
“Congress created the U visa program in 2000 with bipartisan support to encourage crime reporting and cooperation by immigrants who otherwise might fear that contacting police would get them deported. Applications for the visas have gone up almost sixfold since 2010. The increase, coupled with an annual limit on the visas, has led to a backlog of more than 150,000 petitions nationally.”
From Cape Cod to Aspen, Visa Cap Hits Popular U.S. Holiday Spots (Bloomberg News, 4/25/17) The H-2B visa program for non-farm seasonal workers ran out of summer visa numbers on March 13, about a month earlier than usual.
“Lawmakers temporarily lifted the number of seasonal visas for unskilled, non-farm workers for fiscal year 2016: Workers who had used the program in recent years were allowed to re-enter without counting toward the 66,000-person cap. Congress didn’t renew the exemption when it had the chance in December.”
The ‘silent deportation’ of Mario Hernández-Delacrus (Latino USA, 4/24/17) After nearly 20 years in the United States, Mario Hernández-Delacruz boarded a plane for Mexico on April 14, leaving behind his wife and three daughters.
“[S]ince removal proceedings began for him in 2008, the result of a state police stop for driving with a cracked windshield, Hernández-Delacruz has made sure to cooperate with ICE officials regularly, checking in to prove that he’s willing to play by the rules.
“This year, as the Trump administration has vowed to crack down on immigrants in violation of immigration law, Hernández-Delacruz was ordered once more to purchase a one-way ticket out of the United States April 14 and say goodbye to his family.”
“The number of unauthorized immigrants from other countries has been on the rise since the end of the recession, hitting an estimated 5.7 million in 2016. Immigrants from Central America and Asia – largely from India and China — are two of the main drivers of that growth.”
The First 100 Days: Summary of Major Immigration Actions Taken by the Trump Administration (Migration Policy Institute, April 2017)
A European deal with Libya could leave migrants facing beatings, rape and slavery (Washington Post, 4/25/17)
“Libya is the main launching point for migrants streaming into Europe from across a broad swath of the globe, and whose numbers this year are again surging. Under the plan, Italy would train and equip Libyan guards to scour coasts and deserts to stop, push back and detain migrants before they reach the high seas. “