President Donald Trump analogized illegal immigrants who he said are part of gangs to animals during a meeting Wednesday with California officials who oppose their state's sanctuary cities policy.
The Trump administration has gone to federal court to invalidate California's sanctuary law that went into effect in January. "California is in defiance of federal law and this meeting today will highlight that". The case is pending.
Despite California officials' attempts to thwart federal immigration authorities' efforts, Trump said his administration remains committed to deporting violent criminals, such as MS-13 gang members, by the "thousands".
In March, Trump said he stood in "solidarity" with those pushing back against the state's sanctuary policies claiming the laws "release known unsafe criminals into communities across the state". There's no place in the world that has laws like we do, " the president said during a one-hour roundtable.
"This narrative that sanctuary cities will allow more immigrant people to report more crime is fake news, Mr. President", he said. Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf has been a staunch supporter of sanctuary laws and in March warned the immigrant community ahead of a large-scale operation by federal immigration authorities. Gen. Jeff Sessions and Homeland Security Secretary Kirstjen Nielsen, are also scheduled to attend.
Gov. Jerry Brown used his Twitter page to accuse Trump of lying about both immigration and the facts of California's sanctuary law.
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"Flying in a dozen Republican politicians to flatter him and praise his reckless policies changes nothing", he continued.
"But CA-the largest state in the union and the strongest driver of our nation's economy has shown it has its surest conscience as well", he tweeted.
At the table Wednesday were mostly elected officials and law enforcement leaders from Southern California, although Northern California had representation with Fresno County Sheriff Margret Mims and Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson.
President Trump praises cities, counties for backing administration's lawsuit over California sanctuary laws; reaction from Dave Brown, former senior adviser to Sen. "You know, we would really appreciate any direct or indirect funding, any sort of fiscal help you could provide for us". "Mexico talks but they do nothing for us, especially at the border".
"Me and my constituents, we don't want to see another Kate Steinle - every single week, that's what I hear", Melendez said, referring to the San Francisco woman shot and killed by a Mexican national illegally in the country in 2015.