Judge Blocks Sanctuary City Funding Ban

Another Federal Judge Smacks Down Another Trump Administration Policy – This Time on Sanctuary Cities

Chicago won a partial victory Friday against U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions' attempt to financially punish sanctuary cities for refusing to enforce federal immigration laws.

The preliminary injunction issued by US District Judge Harry Leinenweber was in response to a legal challenge brought by Chicago, the third-largest city in the United States, but the judge ruled that his order would be applied on a nationwide basis.

Sessions in July toughened the Department of Justice's crackdown on sanctuary cities by announcing that certain grant programs for cities and states would be awarded only to jurisdictions that allow federal immigration officers into detention facilities and provide 48 hours' notice before releasing inmates wanted by federal authorities. First, Congress blocked him from using federal funds to crack down on legal weed, then everybody found out about Donald Trump addressing him in the Oval as an "idiot", and now a federal judge has blocked one of dude's few remaining reasons for sticking around a White House that hates him - screwing over sanctuary cities. The ruling further frustrates an administration mired in litigation over immigration policy since Trump took office in January.

Trump announced last week that he would phase out Dreamers' deportation protections, which were provided under the 5-year-old Barack Obama administration's deferred-action program.

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"The court finds that the city has established that it would suffer irreparable harm if a preliminary injunction is not entered", Judge Leinenweber ruled.

At stake was more than $2 million that Chicago and its neighboring jurisdictions receive from the Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants.

The ruling has the power to impact at least seven cities and counties, as well as the state of California, that have defied the Justice Departments' new rules. "The city's leaders can not follow some laws and ignore others and reasonably expect this horrific situation to improve". The Trump administration, on the other hand, has accused sanctuary cities of putting politics over public safety. Total funding for such grants this year was $383.5 million, according to the Justice Department.

A Justice Department spokesman, Devin O'Malley, declined comment when asked whether the administration would appeal the court order.

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The preliminary injunction issued by a U.S. district judge was in response to a legal challenge brought by Chicago, the third-largest city in the US.

"I want to be clear, this is not just a victory for the city of Chicago", Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel said at a press conference after the ruling.

Trump's opponents also say there is no correlation between immigration and violent crime, citing a sharp drop in homicides in Los Angeles since the early 1990s, despite embracing the sanctuary cities movement.

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