Biden Admin Asks Sanctuary Cities To Cooperate With ICE To Deport Criminal Illegal Migrants — But There’s A Problem

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The Biden administration is asking sanctuary cities to cooperate with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) in the deportation of criminal illegal migrants despite previously enacting policies that could hinder the effort.

The administration’s push to crackdown on criminal illegal aliens runs counter to earlier policies enacted under President Joe Biden, such as closing ICE detention facilities and rolling back Trump-era Department of Justice law enforcement cooperation grants. The administration’s pleas for sanctuary cities to work with ICE in arrests follows several high-profile murders allegedly committed by illegal aliens, including the killing of 22-year-old Georgia nursing student Laken Riley by an illegal Venezuelan immigrant, which Biden has not addressed. (RELATED: Biden Weighing Enacting Harsher Asylum Rules — Even After Claiming He Couldn’t Without Congress)

“We welcome local law enforcement’s support and cooperation in apprehending and removing individuals who pose a risk to national security or public safety,” a White House spokesperson told Fox News. “When a local jurisdiction has information about an individual who could pose a threat to public safety, we want them to share that information with ICE.”

Sanctuary cities often refuse to honor ICE detainers, which are requests from the agency for notification prior to the release of illegal criminal migrants from state custody so that they can be transferred to federal authorities for detention and potential deportation, according to the American Immigration Council.

An immigration detainee stands near an US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) grievance box in the high security unit at the Theo Lacy Facility, a county jail which also houses immigration detainees arrested by the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), March 14, 2017 in Orange, California, about 32 miles (52km) southeast of Los Angeles. (ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images)

Despite claims that it wants sanctuary cities to work in concert with ICE in detaining and deporting alien criminals, the Biden administration has shuttered or ended contracts with several detention facilities across the U.S. since Biden took office in 2021. These include the California Yuba County Jail, the Georgia Irwin County Detention Center, the Pennsylvania Berks County Residential Center and the Massachusetts C. Carlos Carreiro Immigration Detention Center.

In his first months as president, Biden used executive action to revoke a series of immigration laws that former President Donald Trump had instilled during his tenure, including deportation initiatives, the Muslim travel ban and the construction of the border wall.

The Biden administration also revoked a Trump-era policy that cut hundreds of millions in grant funding to sanctuary cities that were restricting cooperation with ICE and protecting illegal migrants, Reuters reported. Biden rescinded the order and restored the funding, stripping away the requirement that cities work with ICE in order to receive the funds.

The Biden administration claimed Thursday that ICE detention facilities — where migrants are held prior to deportation — are overcrowded and beyond capacity.

“ICE detention facilities are currently over capacity,” the White House said in a statement on Thursday, the same day as Biden’s visit to the southern border in Texas. “Today, ICE has approximately 40,000 detention beds. The bipartisan Senate agreement would increase detention beds to a total of 50,000.”

Biden once again requested Congress on Thursday to approve a border security package that would provide an additional 10,000 beds for ICE detention facilities, among other border security items. The Biden administration also warned that if Congress does not pass the bill, ICE would become crippled due to a lack of resources and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) would be forced to move funding over to the agency or curtail its operational abilities.

“Without immediate action from Congress, DHS will need to move funding to ICE from other critical missions or reduce ICE’s enforcement operations to manage a shortfall of several hundred million dollars,” the White House warned. (RELATED: Majority Of Americans Support Building Border Wall For First Time In Poll’s History)

Even as he insists he needs congressional approval to act, Biden has been privately weighing several executive options to start securing the border, an option he has had since the beginning of his term.

There have been several recent murders in the U.S. allegedly committed by illegal migrants; Riley was murdered in February while on a run by a Venezuelan illegal immigrant, who was subsequently arrested; a Salvadoran illegal immigrant was arrested in connection to the murder of a 2-year-old in the same month. A Honduran illegal immigrant was arrested in February after going on a violent crime spree and raping a 14-year-old; three Portuguese illegal immigrants were arrested February in connection to the death of a 1-year-old.

Illegal immigration has risen exponentially under the Biden administration.

Border Patrol recorded roughly 1.7 million migrant encounters at the southern border in 2021; that number rose to over 2.2 million in fiscal year 2022, according to Customs and Border Protection data.

The White House did not respond to a request for comment.

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