by Tyler Durden, Zero Hedge
Jan 25, 2017 9:25 PM
While we are sure Mayors de Blasio (New York), Emmanuel (Chicago), and Garcetti (LA) are compassionate men who want nothing more than to ensure the safety of illegal immigrants in their cities, we couldn't help but notice that, following Trump's decision to defund so-called Sanctuary cities, the sound and fury spewing forth from various municipalities today was perfectly correlated with the size of taxpayer-money they received from Obama.
As Reuters reports, U.S. President Donald Trump's attempt to strip municipalities of federal dollars for shielding illegal immigrants threatens $2.27 billion in annual funds for the nation's ten largest cities, a Reuters analysis of federal grants found. While Trump has the authority to cut some kinds of funding to the cities, cuts to other federal funding would require an act of Congress.
The total amount remains unclear, as federal money can be filtered through state governments or granted directly to social-service organizations or other groups.
The numbers do not include federal money for law enforcement, which was excluded in the executive order, and programs like Medicaid, which are administered by state governments.
Mayors and city councils of those cities have said that they will not be pressured to report illegal immigrants to federal agents...
Local governments in Los Angeles County, for example, received $582 million in federal aid in the most recent fiscal year. That aid included $207 million for the Head Start preschool program, $70 million last year for airport improvements, and $114 million for community development funds used for housing and other needs.
New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, on Tuesday, said he is going to put an additional $250 million a year away in reserves for four years because of a "huge amount of uncertainty" emanating from Washington.
If the Trump administration actually moved to cut funding, “we would be in court immediately to stop it,” de Blasio told reporters.
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel reiterated the city would remain a sanctuary for undocumented immigrants. In December he pledged $1 million to assist immigrant families.
"(Trump) has vastly overstated the funding that could be at issue with these sanctuary policies.
Any attempts to withhold funds will certainly be the source of litigation and the courts, not the president, will be the ultimate arbitrator," said Peter Markowitz, a professor at New York's Cardozo School of Law, who focuses on immigration.
Trump plans to make good on his campaign pledge to block federal funding to states and cities where local law enforcement refuse to report undocumented immigrants they encounter to federal authorities, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said.
"The American people are no longer going to have to be forced to subsidize this disregard for our laws,” Spicer said.
Spicer said an executive order signed by Trump on Wednesday directs the Secretary of Homeland Security to look at federal funding to cities to figure out "how we can defund those streams."