The Jury Talks Back


Trump Does Not Actually Care About the Dangers Posed by Illegal Immigrants

Filed under: Uncategorized — Patterico @ 5:59 pm

Donald Trump has finally revealed that he does not actually care about the dangers posed to Americans by illegal immigrants. He has revealed that his talk about sanctuary cities — one of the few points on which I agreed with him — was insincere.

How do I know this? I’ll tell you. Watch this.

Mexico is now apprehending and bringing back to the various countries that we’re talking about — Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador — they’re bringing people back to those countries; Colombia, to a certain extent — and they’re going back to those countries.

But we could fix that and so fast if the Democrats would agree. But if they don’t agree, we might as well do what they always say they want: We’ll bring the illegal — really, you call them the “illegals.” I call them the “illegals.” They came across the border illegally. We’ll bring them to sanctuary city areas and let that particular area take care of it, whether it’s a state or whatever it might be. California certainly is always saying, “Oh, we want more people.” And they want more people in their sanctuary cities.

Well, we’ll give them more people. We can give them a lot. We can give them an unlimited supply. And let’s see if they’re so happy. They say, “We have open arms.” They’re always saying they have open arms. Let’s see if they have open arms.

The reflex reaction on the right to this is: ha ha! You stupid people in sanctuary cities! We’re gonna stick you with these problem illegals! Let’s see how you like it!

I understand that reaction. If you don’t think about it, it’s sort of an automatic reaction for people frustated with the illegal immigration issue to have. You guys think illegals are so great? Here, have some more!

And plenty of those places — not all, but some — are saying: sure, we’ll do that. And the knee-jerk partisan claptrap takes up all the oxygen.

And nobody stops to think.

But here’s the thing.

Do that. Stop, for just one moment, to think. Take one moment to step back and ask yourself: what is the problem with sanctuary cities? I’m serious. Pause, stop reading this, and answer that question. Say the answer to yourself. Whatever you think the answer to that question is, say it out loud. I’ll help in a moment by stating what I think the problem is.

Once you say it out loud, and then realize that the President is suggesting that we send more illegal immigrants to these places, you’ll see why I am so contemptuous of this plan.

For my take on what the problem is with sanctuary cities, I’ll give you the short version and the long version. Here’s the short version:

For the long version, I’m going to quote at length from a post I wrote in the summer of 2015 about the murder of Kate Steinle in San Francisco, California:

The murder of 31-year-old Kate Steinle at Pier 14 in San Francisco could have been prevented. Before the murder, authorities had the confessed killer in custody, and knew he was an illegal alien. ICE had told them. But, thanks to San Francisco’s “sanctuary city” policy, police knowingly let him go.

Screen Shot 2015-07-04 at 9.43.32 AM
Above: Kate Steinle, whose murder resulted from San Francisco’s “sanctuary city” policy

Police were required to let the illegal alien go — under San Francisco’s glorious and progressive “sanctuary city” policy:

The man accused of gunning down a 32-year-old Pleasanton woman while she was out strolling San Francisco’s Embarcadero with her father was in a Bay Area jail less than four months ago and should have been turned over to federal immigration officials upon his release, instead of being set free, according to the Department of Homeland Security.

But that’s not the way the San Francisco County Sheriff’s Legal Counsel Freya Horne sees it. In an interview Friday with NBC Bay Area, she said the city and county of San Francisco are sanctuaries for immigrants, and they do not turn over undocumented people – if they don’t have active warrants out for them – simply because immigration officials want them to.

. . . .

San Francisco Police Officer Grace Gatpandan Gatpandan added that San Francisco is a “sanctuary city, so we do not hand over people to ICE.” She also said that the police are “not responsible” for Sanchez once he is booked into county jail, “meaning we do not have control over his release.”

The suspect, Francisco Sanchez, has confessed to the murder.

The policy that caused Sanchez to be released, Ordinance 130764, was passed by San Francisco’s Board of Supervisors and signed by San Francisco’s mayor in the fall of 2013. Its sponsors were San Francisco Supervisors John Avalos; London Breed, David Campos, David Chiu (now a former supervisor), Malia Cohen, Jane Kim, Eric Mar, and Norman Yee. It was signed by San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee.

Everybody in this story is pointing the finger at someone else, but everyone is complicit. The police complain that they were required to release Sanchez. But ICE notes that, actually, police could simply have notified ICE that they were going to release him: “The federal law enforcement source told CNN the sheriff’s department ‘didn’t even need to hold him. They simply could have notified that they were going to release him and we would have gotten him.'”

Obama and the feds (ICE) are not off the hook here, either.

ICE is pointing its finger at the San Francisco policy and the police, but consider: ICE had this guy first, and released him to a sanctuary city, knowing they would probably let him go. According to CNN, “ICE said it turned Lopez-Sanchez over to San Francisco authorities on March 26 for an outstanding drug warrant.” NBC tells us that this case was “a marijuana case that was about 20 years old.”

So: ICE officials knew Sanchez had been deported 5 times before. They knew that, after his last deportation, he was convicted of illegal re-entry and served several years in federal prison. But, upon his release from federal prison, rather than deport him, they turned him over to San Francisco officials for a 20-year-old marijuana case, knowing that San Francisco has this sanctuary policy. Shockingly, the D.A. declined to pursue the case, leading to his release (rather than being returned to ICE custody).

Federal officials should refuse to turn over illegal aliens to sanctuary cities for state prosecutions, unless the state prosecutions are for crimes of violence, or crimes in which the alien is facing several years in prison. Turning over aliens to sanctuary cities, for potential prosecution for low-level non-violent crimes for which they face little time in custody, is tantamount to releasing them outright. Federal officials have the right to say: “if you want to prosecute this guy, you sign a document saying you will return him to us. Otherwise you don’t get him at all. We will deport him.”

The failure to implement this policy is squarely on Obama. And the refusal to secure the border, allowing this guy to come back again and again and again, is also on Obama and the Democrats.

The problem with sanctuary cities is that criminal illegal aliens in sanctuary cities are more likely to successfully evade the reach of the federal immigration authorities, because the local police refuse to cooperate with ICE. That puts society at risk. The more illegals are sent to sanctuary cities, the more danger is created.

If you think that’s hilarious, because everyone walking around a sanctuary city has it coming, then tell that to the family of the beautiful young girl shown above — and then go take a long walk off a short pier. She was a resident of a sanctuary city, so I guess it was her fault, huh?

If Trump actually carries through with this policy, he will be endangering people, to make a cheap political point. Like a chump sucker, I thought that Donald J. Trump actually cared about this issue — as much of a cretin as he is otherwise. But he doesn’t, really. Donald Trump is willing and indeed very happy to put American citizens at greater risk — as long as they live (or vacation) in cities whose policies he doesn’t like.


  1. I had written a very long, and rather angry reply to this comment. I’ll instead just point out that as sad as Kate Steinle’s story is, and my heart goes out to her family, this post fails to acknowledge that there are dozens of Kate Steinle-type stories, and worse, happening in border states monthly due to the flood of illegal aliens. At some point those of us in these states are going to get fed up with the rest of the country fiddling while our neighborhoods burn.

    Comment by Sean — 4/14/2019 @ 9:06 pm

  2. Sean,

    I live in Texas. I agree we are and have suffered because of illegal immigration, and it does feel like we have to shoulder more than our share of the burden. That’s part of why I want a Wall.

    But imo Presidents should be like parents and do what is best for the nation/family. If one child is smarter and more responsible, it mat have to do more. That’s why I wish Trump would do a better job explaining things like this. Instead, he is one of those “parents” who teaches lessons with contempt and the hard way.

    This isn’t a great analogy because Americans don’t need Presidents to be their parents. We believe in self-government. But hopefully you can see where I’m going with this. Texas has to be the adult and when we can’t stand things any longer, then …

    Comment by DRJ — 4/16/2019 @ 9:37 am

  3. I also think that if sanctuary cities are sincere about their concern for illegal immigrants then they would be asking Trump to immediately send as many as he can to their cities.

    Comment by DRJ — 4/16/2019 @ 10:04 am

  4. But instead NYC’s Mayor is threatening to sue.

    Comment by DRJ — 4/16/2019 @ 10:05 am

  5. DRJ, I think Texans have been the Country’s adults for a while now (although a case can be made about Cornyn), and if the Federal government HAS to, by law, send these people somewhere why do we we need to continue “taking one” for the rest of the Nation when these cities’ policies make them the perfect fit for these individuals? If sanctuary cities want to welcome all illegals then lets take them up on their rhetoric; it’s not like Trump has another option with these border crossers, the left and courts won’t let him send them back.

    Comment by Sean — 4/16/2019 @ 12:00 pm

  6. I feel the same way about Cornyn (who only seems conservative when he runs for re-election) and about sanctuary cities (if they really cared about illegals, they would demand that the government send the illegal immigrants to them because sanctuary cities care more).

    But, still, I think Patterico is right that releasing illegal immigrants to sanctuary cities makes it more dangerous for the country as a whole. Illegals who commit crimes here are more likely to be caught and deported than they would be in sanctuary cities, and it takes fewer resources to do it.

    Comment by DRJ — 4/17/2019 @ 8:04 am

  7. The enforcement argument might be true, but the overall problem at the border will never reach a proper solution until the people who are blocking border security and laws attempting to rectify the abuses at the border are pressured by their constituents. Right now the majority of the country isn’t suffering from this crisis like the border states. Their politicians want the laws to force Border Patrol to release these people after 20 days, they want these people to come into the interior of the country unchecked, unsupervised, and unvetted, and based on their whining this past week their reasons are purely political. So, if these individuals have to go somewhere in the country let’s see how these cities feel about the border in 5 years when their populaces increase by half a million illegals like we have here in Texas.

    Comment by Sean — 4/17/2019 @ 1:00 pm

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