The City of Seattle, Washington is suing the Trump Administration. It believes his plans to withhold federal funding from sanctuary cities that don’t fully cooperate with federal immigration authorities (ICE) are unjust.
Wednesday, Seattle filed a lawsuit in federal court. The purpose of the suit is to get President Trump’s executive order on immigration and migrants declared unconstitutional.
Seattle’s city attorney and mayor, Ed Murray, spoke about the lawsuit against the Trump Administration in a news conference. He said that the city’s lawsuit is a testimony to its values, noting:
“We value civil rights, we value the courts and we value the Constitution.”
Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Trump camp would be pulling federal grants from all cities and counties that refuse to help ICE with the detaining and deporting of criminal illegal immigrants.
Three days later, Seattle made it known that it considers itself a sanctuary city by launching this suit. Many more legal responses to the plans to yank federal funds for sanctuary jurisdictions are expected soon.
Trump wrote in his January executive order that sanctuary jurisdictions “willfully violate Federal law” and have caused “immeasurable harm to the American people and to the very fabric of our republic.” The order instructs the attorney general and the secretary of homeland security to cancel federal grants to cities that don’t cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement.
Seattle expects to receive more than $150 million in federal funds this year, including $2.6 million in DOJ grants, the Seattle Times reported. Murray says the city will gladly give up federal money to continue its policy of prohibiting municipal employees from asking about a person’s immigration status, unless required by law or court order.
Sanctuary policy has become the main point of dispute between the federal government and Democratic-controlled cities resisting the Trump administration’s immigration agenda. The Department of Homeland Security now releases weekly reports naming local jurisdictions that refuse to honor federal immigration detainers and that have “enacted policies which limit cooperation with ICE.”
Seattle and San Francisco have argued that Trump’s order violates the 10th Amendment by compelling local governments to enforce federal immigration law. Seattle’s lawsuit also asserts that the directive violates the Constitution’s Taxing and Spending Clause by holding funds that aren’t directly related to immigration enforcement, the Seattle Times reported.
In addition to Trump, Sessions and Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly are named as defendants in the suit.