The suit is specifically taking aim at California's SB54 law, a mandate that prohibits local police from reporting illegal immigrants to immigration officials for minor offenses, the Immigrant Worker Protection Act, and a law regarding the inspection of immigrant detention centers.
Speaking in Sacramento at an event sponsored by 16,000-member the California Peace Officers Association, Sessions was critical of Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf's recent tipoffs to immigrant populations of impending raids and deportations.
Amid escalating tensions between California and Washington over immigration raids, U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is traveling to Sacramento to make a "major" announcement Wednesday about sanctuary cities. Attempts to require local law enforcement officials to enforce federal law-something that is most certainly not their job-cost millions of dollars and, by deterring cooperation with police, make it hard to do the day-to-day work of keeping people safe. The Justice Department's complaint cites the 2012 Supreme Court case United States v. Arizona, in which the Obama administration successfully argued that portions of an Arizona law aimed at bolstering immigration enforcement were unconstitutional because they conflicted with federal immigration law.
He is expected to speak to law enforcement officials in the state's capital Wednesday, just hours after the U.S. Justice Department filed suit - the most aggressive move yet in the Trump administration's push to force so-called sanctuary cities and states to cooperate with immigration authorities.
Governor Brown responded in a statement saying "at a time of unprecedented political turmoil, Jeff Sessions has come to California to further divide and polarize America".
"Immigration law is the province of the federal government ..."
Republican Assemblyman and gubernatorial candidate Travis Allen rejoiced over Sessions' lawsuit and subsequent California visit. It accuses the state of blocking federal immigration enforcement efforts. If the federal government believes there is a need to detain a criminal, we will honor a criminal warrant, as we always have, and we always will.
Meanwhile, California officials are prepared to fight back and hold their stance against Trump's decidedly anti-immigrant policies.
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In his speech, Sessions praised the Trump administration's strong stance on enforcing immigration law.
"So here's my message to Mayor Schaaf: How dare you?".
"It's a bit like a child being sent off to school or into public and being told to behave one way by their mother and another way by their father", said former Sacramento Police officer John McGinness. "They will not shake our beliefs", Farrell said in a statement directed toward Sessions.
The Democrat accused Sessions of lying and of trying to appease President Donald Trump.
U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions is telling California, "We have a problem". Jerry Brown and California Attorney General Xavier Becerra in federal court.
Nevertheless, Brown warned: "This is basically going to war against the state of California, the engine of the American economy".
"Here in California, we respect the law and the Constitution". He said the mayor's alert allowed 800 "criminals" to escape ICE agents during a statewide sweep that netted 232 people.