Trump Administration Suffers Another Setback in Sanctuary Fight
The Trump administration has been dealt another legal blow in its attempts to withhold federal funds from so-called sanctuary cities.
In 2017, then-Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced a new set of conditions for local jurisdictions seeking Edward Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants, including that they notify the federal government when undocumented immigrants are about to be released from custody and allow federal agents access to detainees in local jails. On Friday, Judge Edgardo Ramos of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, ruled that was unconstitutional, saying the federal government “did not have lawful authority” to impose such requirements.
Judge Ramos has blocked the DOJ from enforcing the conditions in New York, New York City, and six other states that sued: Connecticut, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Rhode Island, Virginia and Washington. A nationwide injunction was rejected by Ramos, but the ruling could still have implications beyond the eight jurisdictions.
This is just the latest court decision to go against the administration’s favor. Last month, a federal judge issued a similar ruling in a case out of San Francisco. In April, a panel of judges from the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld a ruling out of Chicago that barred the DOJ from imposing new requirements on applicants for DOJ grants. And last year, judges in Illinois and Pennsylvania blocked the administration from enforcing similar conditions.