Letters sent out by the Department of Justice to sanctuary jurisdictions identified by the Obama administration are based on “principles of white supremacy,” according to California State Senate leader Kevin de Leon.
The letters from the DOJ’s Office of Justice Programs were sent to nine jurisdictions identified in May 2016 as potentially not being compliant with a federal law that prohibits governments from restricting access to an individual’s immigration status. These places are: New Orleans; Philadelphia; Chicago; New York City; Clark County, Nev.; Miami-Dade County, Fla.; Milwaukee County, Wis.; Cook County, Ill.; and California.
Attorney General Jeff Sessions has said that sanctuary jurisdictions will be restricting from receiving federal law enforcement grants as called for by President Trump in an executive order. The letter called for these jurisdictions to provide documentation showing that do comply with federal law.
California’s Senate President Pro Tempore Kevin de Leon responded to these letters in a statement that said: “It has become abundantly clear that Attorney General Sessions and the Trump Administration are basing their law enforcement policies on principles of white supremacy – not American values. Their constant and systemic targeting of diverse cities and states and goes beyond constitutional norms and will be challenged at every level.”
De Leon spoke at the 2016 Democratic convention and has previously said half of his family is eligible for deportation.