President Trump tweeted on Saturday night that his administration has the legal right to send illegal immigrants to sanctuary cities and demanded it happen.
“Just out: The USA has the absolute legal right to have apprehended undocumented immigrants transferred to Sanctuary Cities,” he wrote. “We hereby demand that they be taken care of at the highest level, especially by the State of California, which is well known or its poor management & high taxes!”
The Hill has reached out to the White House for comment.
White House spokesman Hogan Gidley on Saturday shortly before the announcement said that the administration was working with DHS and ICE to try to send undocumented immigrants to sanctuary cities.
“They have said they wanted all of these illegal aliens into their communities,” Gidley said while appearing on Fox News’ “Justice with Judge Jeanine.”
“We’re working with DHS, we’re working with ICE, to try and make sure that happens because after all, it’s what they want. They should not say ‘This is retribution politically,’ they should say, ‘This is an olive branch,'” he continued.
Gidley also said before the president’s tweet that the White House was looking into whether it can legally send undocumented immigrants to these cities.
“We’re trying to figure out if we can do that legally,” he said.
The Washington Post reported on the proposal Thursday. Trump on Friday tweeted confirming that “we are indeed, as reported, giving strong considerations to placing Illegal Immigrants in Sanctuary Cities.”
Democrats have criticized the policy. House Judiciary Chairman Jerrold Nadler (D-N.Y.) called it immoral and illegal on Friday.