Los Angeles and New York City leaders urged president-elect Donald Trump on Nov. 10 to reconsider his campaign pledge to stop funding "sanctuary cities" that protect undocumented immigrants.
The two cities, which do not follow the U.S. Department of Immigration and Customs Enforcement's requests to jail undocumented immigrants without a judge's order, announced on Nov. 10 that they would continue to fight for undocumented immigrants, with or without Trump's cooperation.
"We are not going to sacrifice a half million people who live among us, who are part of our community," New York Mayor Bill de Blasio said at a news conference, noting the estimated number of undocumented immigrants in the city, according to Reuters. "We are not going to tear families apart."
ICE's detainer requests typically only apply to undocumented immigrants with criminal convictions. In October, an Illinois federal judge ruled that such requests are unconstitutional, though the ruling does not apply to the whole nation.
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However, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti's spokewoman Connie llanos said that, while the city works with federal immigration agencies, officials "insist that detainer requests be handled constitutionally."
"It is Mayor Garcetti's sincere hope that no president would violate those principles, the very foundation of our nation, by taking punitive action on cities that are simply protecting the well being of residents," she added.
Other cities, including San Francisco and Seattle, have also pledged to remain sanctuary cities in spite of Trump's presidency.
"Being a sanctuary city, for me, is the DNA of San Francisco," San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee said on Nov. 10, according to the San Francisco Examiner. "We'll always be a sanctuary city."
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Seattle Mayor Ed Murray said that remaining a sanctuary city is "the most American thing we could possibly do" in the face of Trump's promises to crack down on cities protecting resident from immigration officials, according to The Seattle Times.
"These are our neighbors, and we will continue to support our neighbors," said Murray. "We can't allow ourselves to be divided and sorted out. That's not America."