Less than a day after the White House issued a statement saying that policy had been “floated and rejected, which ended any further discussion,” Donald Trump took to his Twitter account to say that he was, indeed, considering sending unauthorized immigrants to “sanctuary” cities in order to punish Democrats.
News surfaced Thursday that, as The Inquisitr reported, the Trump administration had entertained a proposal to transport immigrants detained at the southern border to sanctuary cities such as San Francisco, California, where they would be simply deposited onto the streets.
In an email to Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) sent last November, White House officials inquired whether unauthorized immigrants could be arrested and shipped by bus to “to small- and mid-sized sanctuary cities,” according to a New York Post account. The officials said that the purpose of the plan would be not simply to alleviate congestion in border detention facilities, but to serve as a political message to Democrats.
But ICE rejected the idea, saying that it carried both logistical and “PR risks.” That did not deter the Trump administration, however, from trying again in February, only to once again be rebuffed by ICE administrators, according to The Washington Post.
Trump administration officials were keen to dump the immigrants into the California district represented by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, the Washington Post report said.
But despite the rejections by ICE, which would be tasked with carrying out the policy, and the White House statement on Thursday saying that the policy had been shelved, Trump said on Friday that dumping the immigrants was still on his agenda.
“Due to the fact that Democrats are unwilling to change our very dangerous immigration laws, we are indeed, as reported, giving strong considerations to placing Illegal Immigrants in Sanctuary Cities only,” Trump posted on Twitter. “The Radical Left always seems to have an Open Borders, Open Arms policy – so this should make them very happy!”
Pelosi said that she did not know details of Trump’s plan, but that it was “just another notion that is unworthy of the presidency of the United States and disrespectful of the challenges that we face,” as quoted by The Hill.
A “sanctuary city” is one where law enforcement policies prevent local police from aiding federal agents in their roundups and deportations of undocumented immigrants. But as an MSNBC report noted, the “sanctuary” policy is largely symbolic, and there is nothing municipal officials can do to prevent federal authorities from carrying out deportations.