A San Francisco judge on Tuesday, April 25, blocked United States President Donald Trump's executive order to block federal funding for the 'sanctuary cities'. The US judge's decision is set to hit the Trump Administration's extensive effort to tighten immigration rules and enforcements.
US District Judge William Orrick III in his ruling said that Trump's January 25 order targeted broad categories of federal funding for sanctuary governments. It also said that the plaintiffs who are challenging the order had chances of succeeding by proving the executive order unconstitutional, Reuters reported.
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Sanctuary cities in the US provide safe harbour for illegal immigrants and they often do not use municipal funds or resources to advance the enforcement of federal immigration laws. These cities generally limit their cooperation with the federal government to assist these immigrants avoid deportation.
The Trump Administration had also suffered a defeat earlier this year when two federal judges suspended the US president's controversial executive orders that banned people from at least seven Muslim-majority countries to enter the US. The government, however, appealed against the decisions made by the judges. Trump's travel ban had caused worldwide protests, with people in the US marching to airports welcoming foreigners with supporting placards.
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Trump's White House Chief of Staff Reince Priebus on Wednesday, April 26, told reporters that the administration was taking action to appeal against the ruling.
"The idea that an agency can't put in some reasonable restrictions on how some of these monies are spent is something that will be overturned eventually," Priebus said. "It's the 9th Circuit going bananas. We'll win at the Supreme Court level at some point."
The US Justice Department in a statement said that it would abide by the existing federal law with respect to sanctuary jurisdictions. It also added that the department will, however, enforce conditions associated with the federal grants.