In a shocking move, U.S. District Judge William Orrick balked from ordering President Donald Trump to pay California $1 million in delayed law enforcement funding after Trump refused to make the payment because California is a supposed sanctuary state.
The Trump administration has put a halt to the payout to California because of its support for lawbreaking illegal aliens. But the state took Trump to court to force the feds to hand over the state’s scheduled payment for law enforcement expenditures.
Granted the administration has not said that the state will not ever get the payout, only that the money is delayed while the administration questions California’s policies.
Still, it was a mixed bag on the judge’s ruling. While Judge Orrick didn’t order the administration to immediately hand over the cash — as the state of California demanded — Orrick also didn’t agree to dismiss California’s lawsuit as the administration wanted him to do.
Orrick said the whole situation raised “weighty and novel constitutional issues,” according to the Associated Press.
California is the big test case for the Trump administration. The question is whether the federal government is required to return federal funds to states that buck U.S. immigration policy by creating sanctuary city or sanctuary state rules that prevent local police from cooperating with federal officials.
As the AP notes:
Attorney General Jeff Sessions has blamed “sanctuary city” policies for crime and gang violence. In July, Sessions announced that cities and states could only receive Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance grants if they allow federal immigration officials access to detention facilities and provide advance notice when someone in the country illegally is about to be released.
Cities and states were also required to certify that they complied with a particular federal immigration law. The Trump administration says that law requires that California not restrict officials from sharing information regarding immigration status with federal immigration officers, including information regarding a person’s date of release from state custody and home address.
The AP also noted that at least one ruling along this topic has already been handed down:
A federal judge in Chicago last year blocked the advance notice and access requirements in a ruling that applied nationwide. But U.S. District Judge Harry D. Leinenweber said the DOJ could require Byrne Memorial grant recipients to certify compliance with the federal immigration law at issue.
Still, this fight is at its earliest stages, for sure. But there is great logic to the Trump administration’s position, for sure. After all, why should the American people be forced to continue funding these anti-American, left-wing states that insist on breaking the law and giving criminal illegal aliens a free handout courtesy of OUR tax dollars?
Why should these liberal states be allowed to break our laws with abandon with no repercussions? Is there no rule of law left at all?